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Education ministers laud school garden program

Rudy Fernandez - The Philippine Star
Education ministers laud school garden program

Students show a large upo (botlle gourd) grown in their school garden.

LOS BAÑOS  , Philippines  — The Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Council (SEAMEC) has lauded a Philippine-based school and home garden  program for its significant accomplishments.

The council praised the program “Participatory Action  Research on School- and Community-based Food and Nutrition Program for Literacy,  Poverty Reduction and Sustainable Development” during its 40th High Officials Meeting (HOM) held recently in Bangkok, Thailand.

Launched in 2016, the program also primarily involved the Department of Education-Laguna and the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB).

Since its launch, the garden program has obtained regionwide support for focusing on the nutrition of school children and introducing them to agriculture at a young age.

In its 2017 meeting, SEAMEC-HOM also welcomed director Gil Saguiguit Jr.’s proposal to the education ministers and official to set up school  gardens throughout Southeast Asia as a way to address each child’s  nutrition needs and to generate interest in agriculture at a young age.

The school garden program, according to Saguiguit, is one of those initiatives that depart from traditional ways of promoting inclusive and sustainable agricultural and rural development.

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