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PIA Press Release

NFA to continue "food-for-school" in Iloilo

Iloilo City (13 April) -- The 7,335 pre-school and Grade 1 pupils in the province of Iloilo will continue to avail the 1 kilogram iron-fortified rice they have been receiving daily last school year under the Food-for-School Program (FSP) of the government this summer.

National Food Authority (NFA)-Iloilo Manager Hedy Jardeleza said they have received a new directive that the FSP will be extended for another 40 days in order to sustain the government's efforts to mitigate hunger among children and their families.

Jardeleza said a foreign vessel arrived recently in Iloilo port from Vietnam carrying 68,000 bags of rice fortified with iron of which the 5,800 bags will be distributed to the different schools identified under the FSP before the end of the month.

The FSP is being implemented in some 110 schools of the eight municipalities of the province. These municipalities are Tubungan, New Lucena, San Miguel, Bingawan, Badiangan, Mina, Batad and San Rafael.

The FSP is one of the existing components of the Hunger Mitigation Program of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. Primarily, it seeks to address the nutritional needs of malnourished children and their families while encouraging the latter to keep their children to school.

The FSP remains high on the President's Order of Battle against hunger and poverty. Recently, she ordered the release of an additional P4B to help sustain the fight against hunger.

Under the program, rice and basic food items are given daily to schoolchildren. However, this will be modified to a weekly trek by schoolchildren to their nearest churches or church organization who will distribute the week's supply of the basic food items thereby feeding not only the children but the parents as well.

Jardeleza said the program is well accepted especially among mothers in the province. "This is because the family is already assured of 1 kilogram of fortified rice daily", she said. (PIA) [top]

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