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'Kusina ng Kalinga' for students in Batangas town launched

When public elementary schools open here next week, school children will be provided with free healthy meals through the “Kusina ng Kalinga” (kitchen with care) program, a government-private sector partnerships.

The collaborative school feeding program with the theme “Hunger Ends, Where Caring Begins” was made possible through a memorandum of agreement among Gawad Kalinga, Republic Cement, Batangas provincial government, Taysan local government and the Department of Education (DepEd).

Batangas public information office (PIO) said on Saturday that the signatories of the school health and feeding program were Batangas Governor Hermilando Mandanas, Taysan Mayor Grande Gutierrez, Gawad Kalinga Movement building head Jose Emilio Oquiñena, Republic Cement Building Materials Inc. president Renato Sunico and DepEd-Batangas officials.

The PIO said the “Kusina ng Kalinga” aimed to ensure the health and wellness of the public elementary school children through the provision of free healthy meals in Taysan schools.

The feeding program targets the initial four public schools here with the highest number of malnutrition cases among school children from far-flung barangays, such as the Taysan Central School, Pag-Asa Elementary School, Bilogo Elementary School and Mapulo Elementary School.

Under the agreement, the Gawad Kalinga and Republic Cement are establishing a modern central kitchen where around 750 healthy meals will be prepared for the students from Kindergarten to Grade 3 in the four public elementary schools for academic year 2017-2018.

Batangas Governor Hermilando Mandanas has also pledged support for the feeding program as part of his administration’s thrust. He also committed to give assistance for educational scholarship, establishment of nutrition centers and farm nurseries for high value crops.

Saul E. Pa-a/PNA