Odyssey Foundation Inc. (OFI), the corporate social responsibility (CSR) arm of CDOFoodsphere, Inc. has undertaken several projects under its “Gabay Kalikasan” advocacy to increase public awareness on environmental protection and preservation.

Gabay Edukasyon is one of the five pillars of OFI’s NEELS advocacy campaign – nutrition, education, environment, livelihood and service to humanity. NEELS represent the commitment of OFI to help Uplift the lives of those who are in need.

“Environmental degradation is an undeniable and increasing urgent problem that affects many of society’s basic needs- from food to air, to water. Even as corporate social responsibility among business continues to grow, there remains a stark need to cascade this awareness down to the grassroots. Our environment pillar focuses on enlightening and equipping targeted communities so that they can do their share in helping bring green back into their surroundings,” said Jerome Ong, OFI president.

OFI initiated its first project for the environment on March 2014, in cooperation with Nutrition and Agriculture Office of Valenzuela City. It launched an urban gardening competition called “Gabay Luntian” in Barangays in Maysan and Marulas with 10 household participants.
Another batch was implemented in Malvar, Batangas with 15 household participants each, in five barangays. The owner of the properly-cultivated organic vegetable gardens who have shown their potential as provider of vegetables to their respective communities were awarded additional tools and materials to continue their farming activities.

Gabay Luntian was also implemented in schools and rehabilitation shelters in Valenzuela City. A total of 350 participants in seven batches have participated in urban gardening project which aims to teach communities in managing an organic backyard garden in limited spaces, as urban lands are mostly allotted for commercial activities.

Ong said Gabay Kalikasan Focuses on equipping targeted communities with organic backyard concepts so that they can do their share in helping green back into their surroundings.

“The purpose of this project is to teach each family the importance of the vegetable consumption and maintaining a clean environment in achieving optimum healp.” he said.

OFI, under its Gabay Kalikasan advocacy, also participated in the “Adopt-an-Estero Project” of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in partnership with city environment and Natural Resources Office of Valenzuela. The project aims to aesthetically improve to the condition of the Paso de Blas creek.

OFI adopted Paso de Blas Creek under the project since May 19, 2015 and also participated in the simultaneous creek clean-ups in Valenzuela City. OFI initiated the Creation of Bantay Creek volunteers in Paso de Blas composed of community volunteers.

OFI also conducted a tree planting activity at Mt. Malarayat in August 2017 as a part of Malarayat Watershed Conservation initiatives and to support the National Greening Program of DENR. CDO employee-volunteers participated in the greening activity.

Ong said with these projects OFI aims to raise community awareness on proper use and management of the natural resources in the community.
“Gabay Kalikasan is also anchored in the mission of OFI to combat malnutrition among children. It advances our advocacy towards bringing back to health one family at a time and ultimately transforms a community into becoming healthy, productive and self-reliant. Through the participant learn the values of taking care of the environment and investing time and hard work in producing their own food,” he said.

“With the Adopt-an-Estero Project, CDO and OFI continue to strengthen partnership with different LGUs and the national government,” Ong said.