ChildFund Philippines and its local partner organizations gathered for a program learning forum to lay-out and level-off program quality standards as they implement interventions to address the root causes of deprivation, exclusion and vulnerability situations and experiences of children and youth.
As they recognizes their partners’ contribution to their program principles, strategies and innovative initiatives which can be replicated and scaled up to deepen their commitment to children’s well-being and improve the program delivery to achieve greater impacts in the lives of children and youth , their families and communities , ChildFund invited all their partners in a Forum. Such was a gathering of all key players purported to reflect and share accomplishments , learn together from the challenges and failures and make meaning out of this experience to continue to strive to be more relevant by adapting to current trends and responding to most pressing issues impacting children and youth . This partners forum will serve as a venue to learn from gainful experience through life-stage program implementations and discuss ChildFunds strategic directions .
Asec. Azucena M. Dayanghirang, Executive Director of the National Nutrition Council was one of the speakers they invited to share about the First 1000 Days Manual of Operations .
The Manual of Operations is designed to aid in strengthening the local government units’ (LGU’s) integrated strategy to implement the Kalusugan at Nutrisyon ng Mag-Nanay Act of 2018.
It outlines the steps that LGUs and other stakeholders can take to identify their integrated first 1000 days strategy. It provides guidance for program planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation. It defines the roles and responsibilities per stakeholder and across governance levels (national to barangay). It delineates the roles and functions among frontline workers.
The Manual of Operations is primarily for the direct implementing level, other members of the local nutrition committee as well as national government agencies, and development partners, to enable them to undertake their roles effectively, especially along supporting the implementing levels of the Kalusugan at Nutrisyon ng MagNanay Act of 2018.
“The first 1000 days of a child’s life is a critical window of opportunity that sets out their future path in life. That’s why we worked to place this important issue on the Philippine agenda, since many Filipino children still suffer from malnutrition. A third of them are stunted and/or suffer from deficiencies in essential micronutrients. Less than 10 percent of Filipino children are consuming the minimum acceptable diet. Because of poverty and exclusion, women and children from the poorest and most disadvantaged communities face the greatest risk for all forms of malnutrition, “ Asec. Apet reiterated and stressed out during her presentation.
The passage of RA 11148 or the First 1000 Days Law on Nov 18, 2018 provides the enabling environment for the sustained provision of critical early childcare interventions for the first 1000 days of a child’s life, for optimal growth and development. It ensures that a child’s future is protected from the devastating effects of malnutrition. The Act calls for a strengthened and integrated strategy especially at the barangay level.
“With the MOPr in our hands, I believe that all stakeholders will be provided with invaluable guidance on how to implement efficient First 1000 Days (F1KD+) services that will achieve good outcomes. The MOPr also provides guidance on how to use local and national data to better understand the strengths and limitations of the F1KD+ services and interventions, along with advice on planning and programming following the budget cycle; developing innovations; and in evaluating interventions and projects,” the NNC Executive Director further pointed out.