GK Enchanted Farm is a social business incubator for countryside development. Its aim is for the rich and poor to fight poverty together.
Mr. Rafael Dionisio, the head of tourism department in GK Enchanted Farm, toured me and my fellow bloggers around the Gawad Kalinga Enchanted Garden. The farm is located in a 34-hectare land, but we only covered 16 hectares, which is about a 2km round trip.
The villagers in the farm used to be homeless in Bulacan. Gawad Kalinga selected the communities that were in great need of help. These people are now at ease, because they have a safe shelter and food on their tables.
We first visited the ube farm, but the plants were not yet in full bloom at that time. Most farmers think that ube is not a root crop that needs to be prioritized. However, in Davao, what GK does is that they increase the cost of the ube they buy from farmers, so that the farmers can send their children to school. That surely makes ube more worthwhile to plant, does it not?
This a little out of context, but I thought it would be fun to share, though: One amazing trivia from Bohol, the ube capital of the country and my province, is that the farmers plant while naked in order for the ube to grow bigger! I wonder why I haven’t heard this story from my dad, though.
Next, we ate this flower! Yes, this cosmos flower is edible and it has a similar taste with arugula. This goes well with a vinaigrette.
Pictured below is the same thing I ate at the Bohol Bee Farm. Flower Salad!
We rested for a little while in The Garden of Hope. Rafael said that most of the Filipinos have the mentality of the American dream, where owning fancy cars and being a part of the corporate world are considered as main goals. Most Filipinos try their luck abroad to fulfill their hopes. As a matter of fact, Filipinos are the second highest migrant earners in the U.S.
The Lifebank Center for Bayanihan Economics serves as their finance department. Anna Meloto, the founder of Human Nature (my fave hair care brand), said that it’s the time of the East and the time for the Filipinos to show their excellence.
While we were heading to the animal farm, I was so captivated by this beauty! When blue meets green, and green meets brown!
These cute black pigs wiggled their tail vigorously as we approached, but they easily get afraid when you move around too much.
We were able to identify the scent of tons of leaves, including the citronella, lemon grass, oregano, peppermint, and some Starbucks-flavored-coffee sounding leaves. I hope I can share with you the scent of these leaves.
Having an edible garden at home seems like a great idea, thanks to the tour. It would be awesome to simply pick herbs and other crops that you need right from your own backyard while cooking. Also, growing your own crops can help make you live healthier. Picture yourself sipping a steaming cup of talbos ng kamote tea or a cool blend of fresh carrot juice without taking a trip to the grocery. You might want to incorporate lemon grass in your mini edible farm if you plan on having one as it has been known to keep snakes away.
We were also given a bottle of Bayani Brew Kick-Ass Lemon Grass and Honey Sweetened Peanut Spread from First Harvest. I’m so excited to try these organic products! The products produced by Gawad Kalinga are not their core values, but serve as their inspiration brought about by the aim to end poverty through entrepreneurship.
Some of their products
By the year 2024, Gawad Kalinga’s target is to reach 5 million people. They also want every province to have an Enchanted Farm since the country’s poverty problem calls for a big solution and such an expansion will surely help a great deal.
Apart from it being a farm, the place is also home to training centers, schools, and a bank facility. Pay a visit and witness how big and important the Enchanted Farm is. (photos from GK)
Below are Gawad Kalinga Enchanted Farm’s activity packages:
BUFFET LUNCH – P 350/pax
TOUR & LUNCH – P 500/pax
9 AM to 12 NN – Farm Hope Tour
12 NN to 1:30 PM – Buffet Lunch and Shopping
FULL DAY ADVENTURE – P 850/pax
9 AM to 12 NN – Farm Hope Tour
12 NN to 1:30 PM – Buffet Lunch & Shopping
1:30 PM to 3 PM – 2 Social Enterprises Demos
Gawad Kaling Enchanted Farm
Pandi-Angat Rd, Angat Bulacan