Palawan Province – The Office of the Provincial Agriculturist and the Provincial Nutrition Office partnered together in the implementation of Food Always in the Home (FAITH), a program that will teach the mothers of target municipalities on backyard gardening as a sustainable way of getting food and livelihood.

The program aims to have an integrated organic backyard gardening using the bio-intensive approach to every household with underweight pre-school children in the top ten municipalities with highest Malnutrition Prevalence Rate. The chosen municipalities were Rizal, Bataraza, Araceli, and Dumaran. Though not among the top ten, Araceli and Dumaran were targeted because of the onslaught of Typhoon Odette wherein agricultural assets were highly damaged and sources of food became scarce. Also, these areas are considered as Geographically Isolated and Disadvantaged Areas thus acquisition of food products is difficult.

Nutrition Education Classes which focuses on DOST Pinoy to be taught by the BNS and MNAO of the chosen area, discussion of Selective Food Production which includes agricultural, fish, and poultry farming, and lectures on organic fertilizer and pesticide production were the activities on the program.

The program orientation started last 18 April 2022 headed by the representative of OPA, Ms. Mila Veneranda. Introduction to FAITH, location of the backyard garden, and the schedule of activities were discussed for proper implementation. MNAO, BNS, and the Agriculturist detailed on the area are assigned to monitor the program. Seeds and tools for gardening were also provided during the orientation.

It is hoped that the FAITH program will provide an accessible and safe food for the mothers to give to their undernourished children and also be a source of income for the families.

Written by: IMO Xylene Notario