CALOOCAN CITY, April 9 (PIA) — The City of Manila has once again started the distribution of COVID-19 Food Security Program (FSP) food boxes on Thursday, April 8. This marked the third straight month of the distribution of FSP food boxes, which aims to provide assistance to around 700,000 families in need in the city.
Each FSP food box contains three kilos of rice, 16 pieces of canned goods, and eight sachets of coffee. As of this writing, FSP food boxes are being delivered to barangays in Manila’s 1st District.
With Manila currently under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), the distribution of FSP food boxes is definitely well-timed. As Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso said in an interview, “We created COVID-19 FSP even without the categorization of quarantine. This is meant to cushion the socioeconomic impact of this pandemic. It so happened na nagkaroon tayo ng ECQ kaya timing naman.”
Launched in February, the FSP was made possible with the realignment of the City of Manila’s 2021 budget. Domagoso and the Manila City Council agreed to postpone major road projects this year because hunger was a more immediate problem. Addressing the public in his interviews, the mayor has consistently stated, “Some sacrifices had to be made. Pasensya na po kayo at makaramdam kayo ng lubak sa Maynila. Pero huwag po nating intindihin ang kalsada. Ang importante ay ‘yung bituka. Walang magugutom sa Maynila. Kakain ang lahat sa Maynila.”
Initially, P3 billion had been allocated for the program. Then, in March, Domagoso signed an ordinance allotting an additional P1.427 billion for the FSP.
The FSP food box distribution is handled by the personnel of the Manila Traffic and Parking Bureau (MTPB), the Department of Engineering and Public Works (DEPW), and the Department of Public Services (DPS). On top of their daily tasks, these units are given the responsibility of delivering the food boxes to each of the city’s 896 barangays. (PIA NCR)