Barangay Palina, Kibungan, Benguet has a population of 1365 (according to the 2015 census), and a significant livelihood sourced from farming beans, cucumber, and sayote crops. It is a three to four-hour drive from Baguio City.
On July 8, 2019, Gota de Leche’s Program Support Specialist Ms. Marilou dela Cruz, along with Admin Officer Ms. Mary Grace Gumata, attending pediatrician Dr. Mimie Maranan, and staff members of Igorota Foundation, Inc. Ms. Olevia Amayasan and Ms. Louella Mae Laudio facilitated the service day in Barangay Palina, Kibungan, Benguet. They were accompanied by medical professionals from the Barangay Palina Health Center in support of the new program for Nutrition Support for Pregnant and Lactating Women called “Seeds, Beads, and Meals for Moms.”
Thirty-six pregnant and lactating women attended the service day at the Kibungan Town Hall, an event made possible with partner organizations Rise Against Hunger and Vitamin Angels, who provided rice meal packs and multivitamins, respectively, for the beneficiaries. Ms. Marilou dela Cruz gave a brief history of La Proteccion de la Infancia to the attendees before introducing the Seeds, Beads, and Meals for Moms program. She gave particular emphasis on the program having a 10 to 12-month duration, and not just as a one-time feeding activity. Ms. dela Cruz also explained the nutritional components of a rice meal pack, as well as the seeds and beads aspects of the new program.
Dr. Mimie Maranan, assisted by the barangay health workers, conducted a medical check-up on the mothers and their kids, while Ms. Grace Gumata provided a cooking demo of the champorado rice meal packs from Rise Against Hunger. The attending mothers and babies got to eat several helpings of the cooked champorado afterward before they got their share of rice meal packs and vitamin rations.
Each approved beneficiary received ten rice meal packs (chicken and champorado-flavored), one bottle of multivitamins, and six packs each of pechay, eggplant, squash, ampalaya, mustard, and zucchini seeds.
Gota de Leche would like to thank its partner organizations Igorota Foundation, Inc, Rise Against Hunger, and Vitamin Angels for a successful and fulfilling service day in Kibungan, Benguet!