Project Location: Tondo, Philippines
Project Code: HDPPTT1023

Baseco is district within Chalice’s Tondo sponsor site. Our site is managed by Bless the Children Foundation based in Manila. The organization is deeply involved with impoverished and stigmatized mothers and children of Tondo and Baseco.

Luis Amigó Nutrition 2023-2024, Guatemala

As a country, the Philippines struggles with high rates of childhood malnutrition, childhood mortality, and stunting. Many families are still feeling the impact of the pandemic; unemployment pushed more families to the margins, and food insecurity rates rocketed.

The community of Baseco is one of the most depressed urban communities in Manila. Most of the people living in Baseco live in extreme poverty. Malnutrition is widespread among the children. Government programs are not sufficient.  

Malnourished are highly vulnerable to infectious diseases like tuberculosis, which are ‘rampant’ in Baseco and Tondo. For little children with undernourished immune systems, these infections are too frequently fatal.  

Tondo’s Chalice-supported feeding program is an immediate response to these issues. Since it’s 2015 launch, 3377 children have received nutrition support. 98% have attained a healthy nutritional status; the remaining 2% will continue in the program until they do too. 

The site is now expanding the program to enfold the needs of Baseco, too. The site can accommodate 500 children at a time. Every enrolled child will receive a healthy meal five times a week. Meals will be nutritionally robust and balanced – examples of meals include wheat noodles with ground meat and squash, glass noodle soup with chicken and vegetables, and fish with bok choy. 

The staff are focusing their enrollment on preschool-aged children. Many of these children will enroll for Chalice sponsors; some are already waiting for sponsors. Staff say the children they have met are visibly malnourished, stunted, and anemic. If they were to contract TB or a similar disease, their risk of death would be very high. 

Through the program, the children will get dewormed and professionals with check their health status every six months. As children reach a stable nutritional status and leave the meal program, new children will enter. Most children remain in the program for two six-month cycles. Those that need further intervention can continue longer and are referred for a medical check-up to determine if there are more serious health issues. 

To improve nutrition at the family level, the site will give them home garden start-up kits. If they have any extra produce, the Tondo site will buy it from them to add to the program’s meals. Site staff will also run workshops for parents on topics like nutritional health, oral hygiene, and composting. 

The budget for the three-year program, serving 1500 children, is $271,215.28 CAD. This covers supplies for meals for 500 children for 260 days per year. That’s an estimate of 130,000 meals a year. The budget also includes hygiene kits, multivitamins, anemia test kits, and the cook’s salary.

Budget in Canadian Funds:  $271,215.28 CAD

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Please note that any donations that exceed the request will be used to fund other community projects that may arise.

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