19 October 2019, Calamba, Laguna. 150 participants from Maritime Multinational, Inc. (MMI), Maritime Training Center, Inc., Phil-Bright Ocean Ship Management, Inc., MMSPhil Maritime Services, Inc. and Phil Crewing Maritime Service, Inc. joined in the establishment of their first Corporate Social Responsiblity (CSR) Food Forest with Bio-Intensive Garden in Calamba, Laguna.
The maritime group’s CSR program was inspired by their leadership and staff insistence to “give back to communities in need”, and so was adopted for the benefit of the local communities and public elementary schools in Barangay Maunong surrounding Ayala Greenfield Estates (AGE) in Calamba, Laguna.
A collection of 650 assorted native Philippine fruit bearing trees and organic vegetable seeds, seedlings and cuttings were planted in a public area on the AGE compound, in collaboration and with guidance from the Environmental and Community Relations Committees of the AGE Board, comprising residents active in the pursuit of sharing the “Training of Trainers” experience in sustainable and native, nutritious, climate smart and low-cost food production with Barangay Maunong – which they already hold lasting relations with.
The Bio-Intensive Garden (BIG) approach was created by one of FEED’s Living Legacy Partners, the International Institute for Rural Reconstruction (IIRR), who trained FEED staff in its implementation, maintenance, challenges and solutions; so as to enable other particularly Public Elementary Schools in marginalized areas, to sustain the childrens’ nutrition needs at the lowest cost possible, in order to significantly enhance their educational attendance, performance and thus opportunities, by means of providing proper nutrition and environmental education.
Some of the native BIG seeds, seedlings and cuttings installed in the Food Forest include roselle, chaya, edible canna, Japanese malunggay (moringa), kamatis (tomato), kamote (orange, purple and yellow sweet potato), katuray (corkwood tree flowers), saluyot (nalta jute), talinum (fame / flame flower), talong (eggplant), uraro (araró or arrowroot) and kakawate (madre cacao).
Some of the properties of katuray for example, include diuretic, emetic, emmenagogue, febrifuge, laxative and tonic. In Ayurveda, flowers are considered cooling, bitter, astringent, acrid, emollient, laxative, and antipyretic. Studies have shown antioxidant, antiurolithiatic, antimicrobial, anxiolytic, anticonvulsant, cardioprotective, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, hypolipidemic, wound healing, hepatoprotective, chemopreventive, analgesic properties.
Root, flowers, bark and leaves can be utilized; and in terms of nutrition/edibility, it is often planted for its edible flowers and pods for salads or to be eaten like string beans. Young leaves are edible. In some countries, dried leaves used for making tea.Flowers are an excellent source of calcium, fair source of iron, good source of vitamin B. (Source: http://www.stuartxchange.org/Katurai.html)
Thank you Maritime Earth Warriors for promoting Food Forests by:
- sponsoring the “training of trainers” for the AGE nursery and planting team of 5 gardeners and landscapers, to ensure proper monitoring and maintenance for the Food Forest, to ensure adequate supply of organic seeds to Bgy. Maunong;
- donating a complete set of planting tools (3xbolos, 3xlarge cutters, 3xsquare spades, 2xrakes, 15xhand shovels & 2xnursery trays); and complete set of BIG organic seeds to 1 Public Elementary School identified by FEED and AGE; and
- contributing to the scholarship education fund, supporting sustainable, practical short, medium and long term research in sustainability.
May the FOOD FOREST be with you always!
Ocular Inspection: Status of FOOD FOREST as of 22 November 2019
About FOOD FORESTS with Bio-Intensive Gardens (BIG)
Working with the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) – FEED’s first and longest Living Legacy partner since the 1990’s, “Food Forests” is a term FEED coined to describe its agro-forestry based approach to tree planting and reforestation programs in the Philippines.
Agroforestry is a land use management system in which trees or shrubs are grown around or among crops or pastureland. This intentional combination of agriculture and forestry has varied benefits, including increased biodiversity and reduced erosion.
Whether in Public Elementary Schools or upland watersheds, downstream coastal and midland farms, FEED and its partners aim to “form progressive and productive communities where farming is harmonized with environmental conservation principles for sustained production of food, wood and provision of services through the use of sound agroforestry practices.” (Quote: Institute of Agroforestry, College of Forestry and Natural Resources, UPLB)
As part of a total response to mitigate hunger and improve nutrition situation, the Department of Education (DepEd) institutionalized the Gulayan sa Paaralan Program (GPP a.k.a Vegetable for School program) in 2007. This program was further revitalized in 2010 with the National Greening Program, this time incorporating climate change mitigation and adaptation of components within school.
FEED’s adopted agro-forestry approach (guided by UPLB) in Food Forests and Bio-intensive Gardening (BIG) technology addresses problems earlier identified as hindering the effective introduction and maintenance of school gardens. These school based Food Forests aim to contribute to environmental and climate change protection, food security and nutritional needs of school children; strengthen their appreciation and skills in agriculture, forestry and environment; upgrade their parent’s knowledge in these fields, help conserve agro biodiversity of nutritional importance and eventually enhance transgenerational learning about the role of vegetable in family nutrition and health In schools. The goal is to enhance the school nutrition program by improving the availability and use of nutritionally relevant indigenous vegetables. In both poor rural and urban communities, community garden and backyard approach is promoted to enhance dietary diversity of households. (Source: IIRR)
FEED’s Food Forest program incorporates not only the site preparation and planting, but also a Training of Trainers (TOT) designed to provide local community / school leaders with technical inputs and experiences for School Gardens and Community Gardens, such that they are in turn able to retrain others.
The native tree species selection depends on the locality and ability to source relevant and indigenous Philippine fruit and other tree species from within the same province.
BIG is a biological (as opposed to chemical) form of agriculture in which a small area of land is intensively cultivated, using nature’s own ingredients to rebuild them and maintain the soil’s productivity.
Described as a low-external input approach, bio-intensive gardening (BIG) is widely being promoted in public elementary schools and communities. BIG provides simple solutions to the common issues in gardening. The training aims to facilitate establishment of school gardens that will serve as a spring board for wider promotion.
The TOT also aims to capacitate participants in implementing BIG in their respective communities and schools. Specifically, at the end of the training, the participants would have: (1) gained knowledge on basic concepts and practices of BIG and its link to nutrition; and (2) identified feasible actions to apply lessons learned.
About Maritime Multinational, Inc. (MMI)
Multinational Maritime, Inc. (MMI) was established by Meiji Shipping Group of Japan in 2003 as its manning arm in the Philippines.
MMI was granted a manning license from the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) on 15 April 2003 to select, recruit, train and deploy qualified and internationally accepted Filipino seafarers on board its various vessels owned/managed by MMS Co., Ltd. and its other Principals.
MMI vessels are of different flag registry including Panama and Philippine flags. Some of its managed vessels are under Bareboat Chartered Contract (BBC) from the biggest charterers in the manning industry worldwide.
MMI is committed in providing only the best services for its Principals, thus, MMI endeavored to secure an ISO Certification from Nippon Kaiji Kyokai of Japan. Class NK granted an ISO 9000:2001 Certification in November 2004. MMI is also an active member of the Filipino Association for Mariners’ Employment (FAME).
In 2008, MMI opened its satellite office in Iloilo to cater to the growing needs of its Principals and to provide faster services to its seafarers living in the Panay Region.
For more, visit: http://www.mmi.com.ph
In 2015, the Philippine government submitted to the United Nations the country’s commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The country committed to reduce its carbon emissions by 70 percent by 2030. The carbon dioxide reductions will come from the sectors of energy, transport, waste, forestry and industry.
FEED runs a number of Students and Volunteers for the Environment (SAVE); Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) – such as mangrove planting for coastal protection or ridge reforestation plantings; One Child, One Tree; Bio-Intensive Gardens (BIG) for nutrition in public elementary schools and other spaces; Climate Change Survival 101 and other LIVING LEGACY programs – customised environmental engagement activities for individuals and organisations interested in contributing to climate change adaptation efforts and greening critical areas such as watersheds, ridges, and reefs that all require rehabilitation.
Join us! Help us reverse the Earth’s “hothouse climate” tipping point.
Tree-Planting with FEED
Check out the video journey by Clueless Commuter who planted with us last 24th of June 2017 to get a good idea of how FEED plantings go: https://youtu.be/KROn4rjVqBg
© Fostering Education & Environment for Development, Inc.