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  • It Began With 50 Meals A Day. Now These Moms Hope To Feed 7,000 Frontliners

    They wanted to provide home-cooked meals for the frontliners.
    by SmartParenting Staff .
  • Krisha Nandwani (left), a mom of two, was cooking 50 meals a day to be sent to frontliners in PGH.

    When a community of mommy bloggers came together to feed disadvantaged families in Tondo, they never thought that their project would turn into a huge frontliner feeding program.

    The photo that started it all

    The desire to help the man on the right prompted Clara Ramos (here with a frontliner) to ask help from a community of bloggers.
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    It was the first week of ECQ when PR professional Clara “Gie” Ramos saw a video of an elderly man who said, “Mauuna pa kami mamatay sa gutom bago kami mamatay sa virus.”

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    That image prompted Gie to send a message to the mommy bloggers she knew, asking for any leads on how to find and help the elderly man she watched. Eventually, they learned the man was staying at the Delpan Evacuation Center in Tondo, along with many informal settlers. The bloggers went to work and raised P18,000 to buy ingredients and cook for the families at Delpan.

    “Hindi madaling maglabas ng pera ngayon, pero maraming tumulong,” said Gie.
    JM Lavadia, a single mother, told Gie, “I can’t contribute financially, but I can help with logistics.” JM volunteered her home as a storage and dispatch center, coordinating with suppliers, cooks, and delivery riders.

    When the mommy bloggers received the photos of the grateful lolos and lolas eating the meals they sent, they were deeply moved. They felt they could do more.

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    From helping one man to a community

    (Left) The "lolos" at the Delpan Evacuation Center in Tondo received meals first from the bloggers. Then, CDO helped when it was time to deliver meals to frontliners.

    Two of the bloggers happen to be nurses, and they suggested to help medical frontliners, too. With the project getting bigger, Gie knew that they would need corporate partners for support, and CDO was one of the first to respond. Under its corporate social responsibility program #CDOnates, the company donated food products that enabled the moms to cook home-style meals for the frontliners.

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    “There were about five of us who cooked 50 meals each per day,” explained Krisha Nandwani, a mom of two. “Then, we distributed them to different government hospitals. It’s difficult to go out and buy ingredients nowadays, kaya ang laking tulong sa amin ng CDO products! We would prepare pasta dishes and rice meals – gustong-gusto ng frontliners ‘yun!”

    CDO’s donation allowed the moms to overcome challenges on ingredient sourcing and delivery. But the biggest hurdle was the physical and emotional exhaustion among the volunteers. Gie shared, “I became so busy to the point of sacrificing my time with my family.

    But so were the frontliners, that’s why I can’t stop. But things got better once we figured out a system.”

    “And when the doctors and nurses send their photos enjoying the food, seeing their joy and reading their messages make everything worth it. Nakaka-inspire,” mused Krisha.

    JM's daughter, Julianne Cadee, 7, inspires her to keep on volunteering. “When I see her writing notes to the frontliners and praying for them nang hindi ko inuutusan – I know we are doing something right.”
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    CDO and the mommy bloggers are now aiming to feed 7,000 frontliners in Metro Manila and Bulacan. “With partners like CDO who are committed to working with volunteers like us in feeding our brave frontliners, we can do this,” said Gie.

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