In fulfilling its mission of improving the nutrition situation in the country, the National Nutrition Council embarked in the strategy of Monitoring and Evaluation of Local Level Plan Implementation (MELLPI) with the aim of assessing the effectiveness of local governments in the planning and implementation of nutrition programs from the national down to the local level.
This evaluation culminates with the recognition of LGUs with excellent performance in nutrition program management and implementation as well as delivery of nutrition services to the communities, now known as the National Nutrition Awarding Ceremony.
The awarding ceremony is an annual event carried out by the National Nutrition Council (NNC) to recognize local government units (LGUs) and barangay nutrition scholars (BNSs) who excelled in nutrition in their respective areas. Since 1978, the NNC has been conferring awards, inclusive of trophies and cash prizes, to LGUs and BNSs to applaud their exemplary performance in implementing programs and improving the nutritional status of the people in their communities, particularly infants, children, and mothers.
The notable awards given in the annual NNAC include the Consistent Regional Outstanding Winner in Nutrition Award, Nutrition Honor Award, and the National Outstanding Barangay Nutrition Scholar Award. Consistent Regional Outstanding Winner in Nutrition (CROWN) Award
The CROWN Award is received by municipalities, cities, and/or provinces that excelled in nutrition program management and are bestowed the Green Banner Award in their respective regions for three consecutive years.
These LGUs are adjudged by the interagency regional nutrition evaluation team as outstanding in the region, therefore, are conferred the CROWN award, receive the CROWN trophy, and, a cash prize of P500,000.
The flames in the CROWN trophy embody the local nutrition committee’s burning desire for excellence and success in improving nutrition in their areas. The three layers of fire manifest the years of hard work and the triumph of the LGUs as the regional outstanding winner in nutrition, prior to receiving their CROWN Award. The gradual change in color and height symbolize the LGU’s endless and intensified efforts in nutrition program management.
Nutrition Honor Award (NHA)
Following three years of consistent outstanding performances in nutrition program management as CROWN and CROWN Maintenance Awardees, LGUs are conferred the Nutrition Honor Award (NHA), the highest and the most prestigious recognition award of the NNC.
The awardees are initially adjudged by an interagency regional nutrition evaluation team for the first three consecutive years as Green Banner Awardees, and afterwards are conferred as CROWN and CROWN Maintenance Awardees for another three years. Nutrition Honor Awardees receive the NHA trophy and a cash prize of P1,000,000 in the annual NNAC.
The NHA trophy is well inspired by the flames in the CROWN trophy signifying the intensified efforts, unending commitment, and burning desire of LGUs to succeed in improving nutrition in their areas.
However, what makes the NHA stand out is the base, symbolizing the strong foundation built by the LGU for six years of hard work and success in nutrition program management. Likewise, the beveled cuts of the trophy embody the pruning and refinement they have undergone to achieve the height of excellence.
National Outstanding Barangay Nutrition Scholar (NOBNS)
Tapping into one of the most potent resources available in combating malnutrition across the country, the government initiated the Barangay Nutrition Scholars Program as a human resource strategy to strengthen the barangay nutrition program.
Barangay Nutrition Scholars (BNS), by virtue of the Presidential Decree No. 1569, are trained and supervised community volunteer workers on nutrition that are deployed in every barangay in the country. They are responsible for monitoring the nutritional status of children and assist in the delivery of nutrition services in their respective barangays.
Now numbering more than 43,000, the BNS takes nutrition action down to the grassroots level, identifying and caring for those most vulnerable to malnutrition and its causes.
To honor and respect the efforts accomplished by the BNSs, the NNC recognizes the BNS with the most outstanding performance among the best performing BNSs in each region as the National Outstanding Barangay Nutrition Scholar (NOBNS).
Emerging from the current crop of BNSs in the country, the NOBNS will receive the trophy together with a cash prize of P150,000.
The values that these awards represent such as the LGUs’ burning desire to succeed, their continuing responsibility, and their selfless efforts are all directed to the same goal, improving the nutritional status of Filipinos.
To date, a total of 60 LGUs have been conferred the Nutrition Honor Award while 185 LGUs have received the CROWN, and these numbers continue to increase every year. LGUs continue to thrive to further enhance the nutritional status of the public even after receiving the awards. Furthermore, they also serve as inspiration to other LGUs to do well in nutrition program management for the betterment of their communities.
Individually, having the NHA, CROWN, and NOBNS titles may spruce up the image of winners but looking at the bigger picture, the increase in the number of awardees conveys the significant picture of improvement of nutrition in the country. The National Nutrition Awarding Ceremony is not just about trophies and cash awards, it embodies the unending commitment of LGUs to improving the nutritional status of Filipinos, leading to the optimal nutrition situation of the nation, where no one is left behind.