Leaders issue challenge, call for nutrition against illnesses
City leaders led by Mayor Benjamin Magalong, medical and health authorities issued calls and challenges during the 48th nutrition month culmination program, Aug. 5 at the President Fidel V. Ramos (PFVR) gym.
This year’s theme is, “New Normal na Nutrisyon, Sama-samang Gawan ng Solusyon!”
Inspirational speaker and chair of the Baguio City Nutrition Council (BCNC) Mayor Magalong focused his message on constituents having strong immunity against illnesses through good nutrition from readily available food in the city.
We invest in health, the mayor said, and as for Covid-19, vaccination and booster shots are urged for everybody’s protection.
“We learn to coexist with the virus which is part of the new normal,” the mayor added.
Councilor Betty Lourdes Tabanda who chairs the council Committee on Health and Sanitation, Ecology and Environmental Protection, opened the gathering with suggestions for an age-specific food preparation program for children, adults, pregnant/women, men and the elderly in Baguio as their needs are distinct from each other; and combined nutrition from organic and manufactured vitamins.
The barangays should be motivated by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) to have more medicinal/urban gardens in the city, Tabanda said.
She also vowed to work closely with the executive body for legislative measures, in support of health services and specifically, nutrition.
DILG city director Millicent Carino in a message delivered by her office personnel, expressed gratitude for the support from the grassroots, for the local and national legislation: the Asin law, Nutrition and Dietetics law, Breastfeeding and first 1000 days for the children.
Department of Health (DOH) Regional Director Rio Magpantay extended his message through Assistant RD Amelita Pangilinan with a focal point on the achievement of the Philippine Plan of Action for Nutrition (PPAN). As such, nutritional needs, calls for solidarity for food security, nutrition intervention across all levels and malnutrition being intentionally addressed was his battle cry. He recalled and expressed aspiration that Baguio duplicate being an outstanding nutrition implementer way back in 2018.
Magpantay cited the hard work put in by barangay officials, barangay nutrition action officers and nutrition scholars in turning Baguio to a healthy place. Comparing data for those under five years old, and expected with the pandemic period restrictions, there is an increase in underweight, obese, stunting and wasting; but a very low incidence for malnutrition, he said.
Magpantay also left a profound message for every household to boost immunization against Covid-19, Dengue and Monkeypox, through proper nutrition; fight hunger and malnutrition; and keep the community healthy through individual efforts.
Throughout the program, line dancing as intermission numbers were presented by the different health districts. Awardees for service and contest winners were also honored with plaques of appreciation presented by Mayor Magalong, ARD Pangilinan, Health Services Office head Dr. Rowena Galpo, Nutrition Action Officer Angelita Sabado and Councilor Tabanda.
The Barangay Nutrition Action Officers/Nutrition Scholars service awardees are: Marilyn Barren of Rizal Monument AZCKO brgy, 25 years; Melita Pangilinan of Atok Trail, 15 years; Agustina Amaki of Upper Dagsian; Janet Bolwa of Mines View; Jennefer Canero of Guisad Surong; Janet Dumpayan of Camdas Subdivision; Cayonila Esteban of Country Club; Annabelle Felicio of Lopez Jaena; Marites Gallegos of Manuel Roxas; Teresa Mabalot of West Bayan Park; Lalenn Macayan of Camp Allen; Gloria Palero of Trancoville; Julie Pascual of Outlook Drive; Victoria Suma-il of Bakakeng Central; all have served 10 years.
The outstanding Barangay Nutrition Scholars ranked first to third respectively are: Joemy Duldulao of Middle Quezon Hill, Christine Cortez of Pucsusan, and Dyna Solis of Dominican Mirador barangay.
For the Best Performing Barangay Nutrition Committee; Ranked first to third, respectively and represented by their Punong barangays are Middle Quezon Hill, PB Edita Lina Ibarra; Atok trail, PB Federico Codley;and Lourdes Proper, PB Rowena Gelisanga.
Finalists for the Best Performing Barangay Nutrition Committee are: SLU-SVP, PB Heraldo Lamaton; Upper Quezon Hill, PB Dinah Campos; Lower Quirino Hill, PB Van Oliver Dicang; Pinget, PB Pablo Pawi, Jr.; Aurora Hill Proper, PB May Gonzales; Victoria Village, PB Ariel Reyes; Alfonso Tabora, PB Virginia Pugong; Brookside, PB James Doligas.
There are nominee barangays: Irisan, BGH compound, Country Club, Dominican-Mirador, East Quirino Hill, Kayang Extension, Kias, Lucnab, Military Cut-off, Palma Urbano, Pucsusan, Magsaysay Private road, Middle Quirino Hill, St. Joseph, Sto. Rosario Valley, Trancoville, and Upper Market.
For the nutri-song contest, Brookspoint got the top place, followed by Loakan Apugan, North Sanitary Camp, Pinget and Atab district, as second to fifth place respectively. The entries were judged by John Glenn Gaerlan, Carmencita Juquiana and Jenifer Subion. – JGF