Taipei, Taiwan (Merxwire) – As the country fights against the Covid-19 outbreak, the China Development Foundation (CDF) extends its care to schoolchildren in remote areas of the country who are also affected by the pandemic. The Foundation announced the subsidy list of its “Nutrition 100” program, which plans to allocate NT$5 million for 226 middle schools and primary schools in remote areas nationwide, improving the diet of schoolchildren and keeping them well-nourished by providing them with fruit and milk.
Angelo Koo, Chairman of CDIB Capital Group who also leads the Foundation, deeply believes that “education is the most valuable investment” and that only education and knowledge can help children with insufficient resources to escape poverty. Since taking over as the chairman in 2006, he has used the foundation as a platform to promote various scholarships and charity programs such as the “Nutrition 100” program. Koo is a key figure in Taiwan’s financial sector and a philanthropist. He donated in his personal capacity one million surgical masks to New Jersey in April 2020.
Children in remote and rural areas are reliant on school meals as a key source of their daily nutrition. Yet due to insufficient funding or compromised access to food sources, many schools in remote areas are unable to purchase enough fruit and milk. CDF’s “Nutrition 100” program aims to keep economically disadvantaged schoolchildren in rural areas nourished and helps them establish a healthy dietary habit, so that they can develop better immunity to prevent COVID-19.
According to Chang, a teacher from Jian-Shin Elementary School in Fangyuan Township, Changhua County, before receiving subsidies from the CDF program, the students mostly ate affordable fish varieties containing heavy metals. Now with the subsidies, they have access to snappers, basa fish, and milkfish, which are good sources of Omega-3 and Vitamin D. The school meal program secretary from Xinghua Elementary School in Erlin Township also stated that, “The kids are the happiest when they have milk in their school meals. After drinking milk for some period of time, the children have grown a lot taller and maintained a more normal BMI.” Moreover, some parents intend to transfer their kids to Xinghua upon hearing that students here have access to milk and fruits weekly.
In order to fulfill the company’s social responsibilities, CDF has long been promoting its “Nutrition 100” program through the Foundation. Since its subsidies for 36 schools in Taitung County 16 years ago, the program has now expanded to a total of 10 cities and counties, including Yilan, Taitung, and Chiayi, with over 10,000 subsidy recipients per year, laying a good foundation for the children’s health as well as benefiting them both educationally and culturally.