Monsanto Philippines, Inc. recently led a student outreach activity in Davao City to broaden young people’s awareness on the role of modern agriculture in feeding the country’s growing population. In collaboration with the Department of Education (DepEd) Regional Office in Davao City, Monsanto conducted among young students the first educational and animated presentation entitled Lina’s Town Rises Again, the only Filipino published children’s book on agricultural biotechnology.
The said book was written for elementary school children to gain a basic understanding of the food value chain, the different challenges to food sufficiency, and the role of modern science in keeping up to the growing demand for food. The children’s book was inspired by a true story of how biotech seeds positively transformed a woman farmer’s life in Sultan Kudarat, and enabled her farming community to recover economically from a devastating typhoon.
Division Librarian II and DepEd Hub Coordinator Rosalie Antipuesto said the animation had a very good impact on the school children because they were getting good information about modern agriculture while being entertained. “The questions they asked showed how much the story engaged them. You can see that they are starting to show interest in modern agricultural technology.”
The story was authored by Chat Ocampo, the Corporate Engagement Lead of Monsanto, Philippines, who has authored two other children’s books. The book was written in an informative manner to keep the interest of young readers while conveying some highly technical information about seed technology, as well as deliver messages on sustainability and safety.
Through this book, Ocampo feels she is able to do her share in “keeping the younger generations interested in matters related to agriculture while reaching out to equally important audiences, such as young parents and teachers.”
Meanwhile, Antipuesto said “I hope Monsanto is able to do more of these activities which not only encourages interest in agriculture but also love for science. It is also good to see students and teachers getting clear and straightforward information about biotech crops.”
Monsanto is committed to expanding the discussion on the importance of sustainable agriculture in schools and colleges across the country. Since 2012, Monsanto has already reached out to more than 10,000 students in Quezon City, Iloilo, Davao, General Santos and Cagayan through their activities geared towards making young minds interested in agriculture.