Press Release
September 22, 2014

Poe welcomes coverage of all severely wasted
public school children in gov't feeding program

All severely wasted children in the country will benefit from the government's feeding program that is set to receive P1.3 billion in allocation next school year.

Sen. Grace Poe, staunch advocate of the institutionalization of a free lunch feeding program for all public school children, was assured by Education Secretary Bro. Armin Luistro at the Senate hearing (last Sept. 22) for the budget of the Department of Education (DepEd) that 100 percent of the country's severely wasted children will be covered for the first time next school year for an initial 120 school days or about 6 months.

"Lahat ng mga batang buto't balat (sa pampublikong paaralan), mapapakain niyo na? Mahalagang maitaguyod natin sila," Poe emphasized.

The senator also asked Luistro to submit DepEd's plan to ensure the program's effective implementation and the possibility of covering other undernourished children. "Since this will be the first time that we will be doing this program on a large scale, it is important to come up with a study on how we can monitor this - para siguraduhing sa sikmura ng gutom na bata mapupunta at hindi sa bulsa," Poe stressed.

In the latest statistics, there are 562,262 severely wasted children in public schools nationwide.

Poe has filed Senate bill 79 titled, "Sustansya Para sa Batang Pilipino Act," which seeks to establish a comprehensive free lunch feeding program for public school children, not only to positively address malnutrition, but also to produce more intelligent Filipinos who will lead the country in the future.

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