Govt feeding program may include 2-year-olds due to budget increase
MANILA, Philippines — Two-year-olds may soon also receive free meals in day care centers under the government’s Supplementary Feeding Program after a proposed increase in its budget was approved by the Senate, Senator Grace Poe said Sunday.
Poe’s amendment to increase the feeding program’s budget from P3.6 billion to P6.6 billion was approved during the Senate deliberations.
“Nutrition during pre-school years is important for kids’ growth and learning, and to provide energy for high activity levels. This budget increase is about putting children on the right path to a healthy start in life,” Poe said in a statement.
Poe said this budget increase will expand the program to include two-year-old children since the current Supplementary Feeding Program implemented by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) only covers children from three to five years old.
“Dalawang taon ang edad na kadalasan ay purong solid food na ang kinakain ng mga bata. Pero hirap ang ibang pamilya na maglagay ng pagkain sa mesa. Sa murang edad, bigyan na natin sila ng masustansyang pagkain. Ang malusog na simula ay magiging yaman ng ating bansa,” Poe said.
(The age of two is where children eat solid food, but some families have a tough time to put food on their tables. At a young age, let’s give them nutritious food. A healthy start will become the wealth of our country.)
The Supplementary Feeding Program is one of the components of the Masustansyang Pagkain Para sa Batang Pilipino Act.
It provides undernourished children from three to 5 years of age in day care centers with one fortified meal for not less than 120 days in a year.
Editing by MUF
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.