As the world continue to face the deadly pandemic, COVID-19, majority of people shifted online for their everyday interactions and transactions. This also applies for various industries which is making use of the convenience and easy accessibility of the internet to continue with their operations, thus, majority of companies and organizations, both private and government, shifting to work-from-home schemes for the time-being. With this shift to work-from-head, government agencies also started organizing meetings and webinars of sorts using the countless available platforms online like Zoom, Google Meets, Messenger, etc, as mass gatherings and face-to-face interaction are strictly prohibited. These applications were of huge help in organizing such virtual meetings as information exchange and dissemination is vital during this time. Work-from-home schemes, webinars, and virtual meetings filed our days instead of the usual day in the office, which has been dubbed as “the new normal.”
With this transition to using the internet as the main source of communication during this pandemic, the National Nutrition Council Region III also made it a point to organize events online. Starting with the staff familiarizing with the web-based applications to be used for virtual meetings, to holding virtual meetings with various nutrition-federated groups such as the Central Luzon Advocates and Regional Nutrition Information Network (CLARINET) and the Regional Nutrition Committee (RNC). Last 14 May 2020, NNC-Region III successfully convened the 1st Quarter Meeting of the Regional Nutrition Cluster (RNC) via Google Meets. The meeting was presided by the Chair of the committee, Regional Director Cesar C. Cassion, MD, MPH, CSEE, CESO IV of the Department of Health-Central Luzon Center for Health Development (DOH-CL CHD). During the meeting, the NNC-Region III staff presented the following topics to the RNC members:
- Pre-COVID 19 Nutrition Situation;
- Gaps and Needs of Nutrition Supplies;
- Regional Nutrition Cluster Initiatives and Response;
- Good practices and challenges;
- Executive Order No. 51 or Milk Code and its Revised IRR;
- Actions requested from the RNC member agencies; and
- Guidelines on the “Be Fit and Stronger Challenge.”
The 1st Quarter Meeting gave way for the RNC member agencies to share their accomplishments and their good practices during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), as a partner of the Department of Agriculture (DA), is continuously studying the consequences in terms of food security in the country. They also issued a memo regarding issuance of food passes; facilitated local transport of fish harvest; provided relief operation (specifically 91 frozen packs; 40 thousand sardines distributed to fisherfolk, frozen chicken, bacon and 900 kilos of rice to indigenous people (IPs) of Casiguran, Aurora); produced 2.9 million fingerlings and implemented the “Balik-Sigla Ilog” to fisherfolk; and continuous monitoring of prices and production of fish to make sure there is enough supply up to 90 days. BFAR also highlighted their accomplishment as the number one region in aquaculture in the country.
About NNC Region III
At the local level, nutrition committees, chaired by the local chief executive, implement, monitor, evaluate and coordinate the local plan of action for nutrition (LPAN). The LPAN is integrated into the local development plan to ensure sustainability, resource allocation, and complementation with other development efforts.
Regional Nutrition Committee (RNC) for Central Luzon, a dynamic and empowered policy- making and coordinating body in achieving and sustaining well-nourished and productive individuals and communities
Regional Nutrition Committee (RNC) for Central Luzon is a multisectoral committee collaborating, coordinating and cooperating with other Government Organizations, Non-Government Organizations, civil society, peoples organizations , stakeholders and community in addressing current and emerging nutrition and nutrition-related problems in the region through:
Policy and Plan Formulation
Information Management System
Social and Resource Mobilization
Monitoring and Evaluation
Integrity – We deal with our partners and clients with honesty and transparency
Accountability – We take full responsibility for our decisions and actions
Competence – We develop ourselves towards excellence by continuously enhancing our capabilities
Commitment – We serve with dedication, diligence and enthusiasm in executing our duties and responsibilities
The NNC Region serve as the secreatariat of the RNC. The Regional Office headed by Regional Nutrition Program Coordinator, Nutrition Officer III, Nutrition Officer II, Nutrition Officer I, Administrative Aide VI and Administrative Aide III (driver).