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Kapihan sa Baguio Hosts 3rd Cordillera Minera Forum 2024: Celebrating Women’s Month in the Geology & Mining Industry

Baguio City – Last March 25, The Mines and Geosciences Bureau-Cordillera Administrative Region (MGB-CAR) recently organized the 3rd Cordillera Minera Forum, a celebration of Women’s Month with a focus on recognizing the contributions of women in the geology and mining sector within the Cordillera region. Under the theme, “Mga kababaihang pinatutunayan ang kakayahan sa larangan ng heolohiya at pagmimina” the event shed light on the increasing involvement of women in traditionally male-dominated industries.

Director Fay Apil, Regional Director of MGB-CAR, highlighted the progress made by women in the sector. She said that the mining industry is still dominated by male employees. She stated “Sa mga operating mines and quarries natin dito sa Cordillera, it’s very sad na nakikita natin na male dominated pa rin. Out of the 7,355 employed in the mining industry and quarries, 728 lang or 9.9% ang mga babae, karamihan mga lalaki.

However, Director Apil emphasized that although it is a male-dominated industry, more women are now starting to pursue mining-related courses.

In envisioning the future role of women in geosciences and mining, Director Apil emphasized the importance of providing equal opportunities. She said “In the MGB as a whole, karamihan ng mga chief geologists ng mga regions are women. We also have women heading yung mga key positions, division chief ng Mine Management Division and Mine Environment Safety Division.  It doesn’t necessarily mean that we are giving preference to women, but then we are giving opportunities to both women and men.”

Additionally, Attorney Desiree Zan Lud-ayen, Attorney III of MGB-CAR, underscored the legal concerns faced by women in the mining industry. She expressed that in 2023, the MGB-CAR conducted an 18-day campaign against violence against women, where they conducted a lecture series on laws regarding women, such as the Bawal Bastos Law and the Magna Carta of Women.

Moreover, Engr. Marie Aurora Dolipas, Safety Group Manager at Philex Mining Corporation, emphasized the importance of recognizing women’s contributions.

“Men and women complement each other. We all have our roles. We appreciate that the mining management appreciates the contribution of women and just gives us the opportunity. Sa mga female professionals, we step up, we do not ask for special consideration because of gender, we show what we can do, let’s maximize the opportunity given to us” Engr. Dolipas expressed during the forum.

As the 3rd Cordillera Minera Forum 2024 concluded, the forum left a message of empowerment and recognition for women in the geology and mining sector, reaffirming their vital role in shaping the industry’s future.

~Adrian Paul Andiso~

**Photo courtesy: Canva**

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