President Rodrigo Roa Duterte compared the malnutrition problem in the country as that of the drug menace, which should be stopped immediately so as not to compromise the future of our country.
Duterte through Secretary of Health Francisco Duque III made this commitment and call on all stakeholders to invest in nutrition and end malnutrition in his keynote address during the 2018 National Nutrition Awarding Ceremony at the Philippine International Convention Center, July 31.
“Good nutrition for everyone is everybody’s business… and just like drug abuse that has permeated our society, malnutrition has to be stopped now!” the message said. The awarding ceremony is an annual event of the National Nutrition Council to recognize outstanding local government units (LGUs) and Barangay Nutrition Scholars (BNS) with effective and efficient implementation of nutrition programs resulting to improved nutrition situation of infants, young children, and mothers.
Secretary Duque together with NNC Governing Board Vice-Chairs Agriculture Undersecretary Bai Ranibai Dilangalen, and Interior and Local Government Undersecretary Austere Panadero, and Assistant Secretary of Health and NNC Executive Director Maria-Bernardita Flores conferred the nutrition awards. Guests included officials from NNC Governing Board member agencies along with 500 other participants representing various nutrition stakeholders.
Topping the list of winners across the five different award categories are the province of Nueva Vizcaya, City of Santa Rosa in Laguna, and the municipalities of Ivana in Batanes, Alfonso Lista in Ifugao, and Malungon in Sarangani, which were all conferred with the Nutrition Honor Award (NHA) – the highest distinction in nutrition for LGUs that were able to sustain improvement in the nutritional status of their constituents for six consecutive years. Winners received one million pesos in cash as grant.
Other awards given were the Consistent Regional Outstanding Winner in Nutrition or CROWN Award (for exemplary performance in the past 3 consecutive years) and the 1st and 2nd Year CROWN Maintenance Awards.
The winners of the CROWN Award are the provinces of Quezon and Misamis Occidental; the cities of Vigan, Mabalacat, and Biñan; and the municipalities of Santa in Ilocos Sur, Sta. Fe in Nueva Vizcaya, Talavera in Nueva Ecija, Tublay in Benguet, Caibiran in Biliran, Alicia in Zamboanga Sibugay, and Polomolok in South Cotabato.
The First Year Crown Maintenance Awardees include the Cities of Tagum in Davao del Norte, and Bayugan in Agusan Del Sur; and the municipalities of Kalayaan in Laguna, Roxas in Oriental Mindoro, Manolo Fortich in Bukidnon, and San Francisco also in Agusan Del Sur.
While the recipients of the Second Year CROWN Maintenance Award are the municipality of Pamplona in Negros Oriental; cities of Ilagan in Isabela, Baguio, Taguig, and Gingoog in Misamis Occidental; and the provinces of Zamboanga Sibugay and South Cotabato.
On the other hand, the coveted title of the 2017 National Outstanding Barangay Nutrition Scholar (NOBNS) was awarded to Ms. Angelita L. Aquino of Barangay Mapaang, Maco, Compostela Valley.
BNS Aquino bested more than 43,000 other BNSs deployed nationwide. Her commendable efforts in the delivery of nutrition services include the Egg Project – a distribution and provision of an egg a day to identified malnourished and children with borderline weights for 120 days to improve their nutritional status.
The awardees of the Nutrition Honor Award, CROWN Award, CROWN Maintenance Award, and NOBNS Award were evaluated from March to July 2018 for their accomplishments in 2017, endorsed by the interagency National Nutrition Evaluation Team and confirmed by the NNC Technical Committee. The CROWN awardees were deliberated on by the respective Regional Nutrition Evaluation Teams and confirmed by the Regional Nutrition Committees.
The NNC has been presenting the awards since 1978. Winners, both LGUs and the BNSs, receive cash prize, trophy, and/or certificate of merit, in recognition of their efforts toward nutrition improvement.
The event will also highlight the launch of a coffee table book published by the NNC called “Compendium of Actions on Nutrition” in collaboration with Nutrition International and UNICEF Philippines, featuring success stories and lessons learned from the implementation of nutrition actions in 11 LGUs.
The compendium will be used in capacitating local government units in formulating comprehensive plans of action, making informed decisions, and adapting best approaches for successful local level implementation of the Philippine Plan of Action for Nutrition.
The NNC as the country’s highest policy-making and coordinating body on nutrition organized the event as culmination of the 2018 Nutrition Month celebration.