NORZAGARAY, Bulacan — Following the success of Taysan Kusina in Batangas, Republic Cement’s anti-hunger and malnutrition prevention program “Kusina ng Kalinga” is now expanding in the landlocked municipality of this province — Norzagaray.
Kusina ng Kalinga is a joint initiative of Republic Cement and Gawad Kalinga (GK), aims to address the issue of malnutrition with the help of the community, parents, and teachers to build a Stronger Republic through stronger children.
According to Republic Cement Services, Inc. President Nabil Francis on Wednesday press conference, “Republic Cement’s partnership project with Gawad Kalinga aims to provide free nutritious meals to 1,500 school children in four barangays of Norzagaray with the opening of the Bulacan Kusina this coming July.
“Last year, we were testing the waters to see whether this program would address hunger and malnutrition. We are happy to work with Gawad Kalinga once again because we continue to see how our vision is aligned and how we can work together towards our shared aspirations for a hunger-free Philippines,” Francis added.
The Bulacan Kusina will be mounted in Timoteo Policarpio Elementary School. This is where parents and volunteers can help prepare daily meals for the schoolchildren. The program will initially feed schoolchildren from Timoteo Policarpio Elementary School, Banahaw Elementary School, Bigte Elementary School, and Apugan Elementary School.
Republic Cement undertakes to support this program of GK through a grant that will fund the setup of a central kitchen in Timoteo Policarpio M. Elementary School where the meals of the students from Kindergarten to Grade 3 are prepared for 120 days in the school year 2018-2019.
Kalayaan Sta. Barbara, Kusina ng Kalinga operation head said, “GK prioritizes the most vulnerable children or malnourished and the majority of the students here come from indigent families.”
She also added that Gawad Kalinga needs to educate young students to eat more vegetables, that’s why most of our 23 recipes are mainly include different types of vegetables to ensure that they have received proper nutrition.
The program also benefits local farmers from Bulacan. Local farmers are tapped to produce and supply fresh vegetables for the Kusina, giving them a chance to help and earn extra income. These farmers now join Gawad Kalinga, the Department of Education, and Republic Cement in the fight against hunger.
“Sustainability is one of the most important elements in the Kusina ng Kalinga project. In the long run, we want to empower our community partners to be self-sustaining and become stronger catalysts of progress within their respective communities,” said Francis. “By giving new opportunities for our local farmers, we are creating a more meaningful change.”
“We want to ensure that the foundation of this country, our youth, can be strong enough to lead the country in the future. This is aligned with our mission to build a Stronger Republic.” Francis concluded.
Kusina ng Kalinga is a program that aims to alleviate hunger and malnutrition among children in the Philippines, one community at a time. In 2017, the first Kusina ng Kalinga in Batangas was set up in the Municipality of Taysan, involving parents and volunteers who prepare daily nutritious meals in a fully-functioning kitchen. These meals are then delivered to the schools and distributed to schoolchildren in their classrooms.
Republic Cement and GK are looking to expand the program to more schools in the coming months. After all, stronger kids make for a stronger Republic. (RONDA Balita Online News)