FoodfindsAsia.com | The first ‘Kuwentong Pagkain’ for college students | DECEMBER 21, 2020 – The Mama Sita Foundation (MSF) towards the end of 2020 opened its annual food story contest Mga Kuwentong Pagkain (MKP) to college students with its Eskwela Edition. With the theme “Regional Food Heritage,” the contest hopes to tap young storytellers to learn and explore their food culture, from their grandparent’s recipes to regional ingredients that define their favorite foods.
The contest is open to all interested Filipino undergraduate students or exchange students currently enrolled in a Philippine college or university. Students can submit their food stories in an essay or video format. The deadline for the submission of entries is on January 19, 2021. The contest concludes activities on February 27, 2021.
Avenue for awareness
The Mama Sita Foundation has always organized Mga Kuwentong Pagkain to increase awareness of Philippine food heritage. Over the years, MKP has gathered many food stories from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, as well as from Filipinos in different sectors—students, workers, young professionals, retirees, and even Filipinos living abroad!
It is hoped that the Eskwela Edition inspire budding storytellers not only to eat, but also to understand and appreciate the food culture that is their heritage. In researching and presenting their story (which can be about heirloom foods, culinary traditions, cooking methods, food norms, rituals or beliefs related to food, or local food etiquette), students help create materials that promote these culinary treasures.
Amid the pandemic
Times were very different when the Foundation started organizing the contest. Because of the pandemic, movement has become limited: travel is minimized, gatherings discouraged, and schoolwork became remote.
Things have not changed, however. People still love to share stories, write about their experiences, and get creative with their messages. In continuing with Mga Kuwentong Pagkain this year, it is a way of bringing hope, creativity, and a sense of wonder back to the fore. Through the contest’s Eskwela Edition, the Mama Sita Foundation wants to inspire the younger generation to become involved in preserving their culinary heritage, and to do their part in chronicling the flavors of the Philippine Islands—from the safety of their homes.
It echoes what Teresita “Mama Sita” Reyes has advocated throughout her life: to find and uphold the food heritage of Filipinos in order to make it known to the world.
For more information on Mga Kuwentong Pagkain: Eskwela Edition, visit https://mamasitas.com/join-mga-kuwentong-pagkain/. For more information on Mama Sita Foundation and its initiatives, visit www.mamasitafoundation.com.