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    Posted April 22, 2014 by

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    Free food for school kids in Phl pushed

    AN institutionalized free breakfast program for day care center, preschool and elementary school children in all public schools in the Philippines is now taking shape.
    Rep. Raul del Mar of Cebu City on Tuesday said a technical working group (TWG) formed by the House Committee on Basic Education is now crafting a proposed law based on House Bill 364.
    "Unlike in the past where it was implemented only for a limited duration and in (selected) areas for public schools, now it will cover all public schools," Del Mar clarified.
    Under HB 364, it shall be implemented in all public schools throughout the country since almost all school children enrolled come from poor families and suffer undernourishment and malnutrition affecting their capacity to attain and maintain average academic performance.
    "These children coming to school with practically no breakfast from home cannot be expected to absorb their lessons in school while suffering hunger pangs," the lawmaker stressed.
    Del Mar noted that the Department of Education (DepEd) and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) implemented an immediate intervention to address hunger among families through their children enrolled in DepEd supervised public day care centers, preschools and elementary schools in the form of food subsidy for young learners who belong to poor families.
    The said program involves a daily ration of one kilo of rice given to the child's family for a specific period of time as long as the child goes to school or to the day care center every day.
    On the challenges of malnutrition, the Philippine government is committed to the global call to eradicate malnutrition as stated in the World Declaration on Nutrition and Global Plan of Action for Nutrition adopted during the International Conference on Nutrition (ICN) in Rome, Italy in December 1992.
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