Nestle Philippines reported a 15% increase in nutrition knowledge among students in 13,000 schools nationwide following the SY 2018-2019 implementation of the Nestle Wellness Campus program, a continuing joint initiative with the Department of Education (DepEd).
Now on its seventh year, the program so far has reached over 200,000 teachers, 7.8 million students and 4.7 million parents nationwide. Nestle Wellness Campus is a nutrition education activity in Philippine public schools which is embedded in DepEd’s Music, Arts, Physical Education and Health (MAPEH) curriculum.
Currently widely implemented in the National Capital Region, CALABARZON, Bicol and Central Visayas regions, the program imparts to grades 1 to 10 public school students and their parents the importance of choosing healthier food and drink options as well as engaging in physical activities and family mealtimes to promote healthy habits among students.
Apart from nutrition education for students, custom dance exercises became part of the school routine. Expanded nutrition modules were cascaded to parents in the larger school community to ensure that what is being taught to children is also applied at home. Schools are also encouraged to implement their own individual projects through the inter-school, inter-region competition. Some notable examples include providing more nutritious options in their cafeterias, starting up school gardens, and providing clean drinking water for their student population.
Studies on the program showed 100% application of the program’s expanded nutrition modules among students and parents, following the 2018-2019 schoolyear implementation.
These were based on Nestle’s Healthy Habits including: choosing nutritious and varied options, portion management, drinking water, active play, and enjoying meals together.
Students showed a marked improvement in their nutrition behavior choosing to eat healthier food and increasing water intake. Best of all, parents responded that they began preparing healthier meals for their families at home guided by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI)’s Pinggang Pinoy.
“Our dream is to encourage more and more Filipino children and their families to lead happier and healthier lives through proper nutrition. Over the last seven years, we are proud of the inroads that the Nestle Wellness Campus program has achieved in moving the needle in the right direction among students and their parents,” said Nestle’s Corporate Affairs Director Ernie Mascenon.
“We are working with our partners at the Department of Education to expand the program to more areas as we work join forces with other like-minded organizations to help alleviate malnutrition.”
The Nestle Wellness Campus is a banner program under the larger corporate Nestle for Healthier Kids (N4HK) initiative which aims to help 50 million children across the globe lead healthier lives by 2030.