Hapag-Asa being initiated by the Catholic Church, reaches out to children in need regardless of religious affinity and cultural beliefs. The program responds to all malnourished children in the community while also taking into consideration and respecting their religious and/or cultural practices. The program also prioritizes Indigenous People (IP) communities.
In the Philippines, according to the 2018 Expanded National Nutrition Survey (eNNS) by Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI), about 2 to 3 out of 10 children are underweight and 3 out of 10 are stunted among preschool children, ages 0-59 months. Among the school-age children ages 6-10 years old, 25.0% are underweight for their age while 24.5% are classified as short or stunted and apparently have suffered from malnutrition in the past.