caraga mobilizes volunteers for iycfThe National Nutrition Council- Caraga has continued the 2nd batch of barangay-level trainings on the community support for Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF). The training on community mobilization in support to the IYCF Program aims to mobilize stakeholders and involve families and communities to promote, protect and support IYCF practices. The trainings are conducted in selected model barangays in the five provinces of the region.


The Municipality of Nasipit, Agusan del Norte started mobilizing volunteers with the training conducted at the Rural Health Unit of Barangay Kauswagan  on October 6-9, 2014. Over 25 participants, composed of barangay health workers, barangay nutrition scholars, rural health midwives and mother-leaders attended the activity.

 Meanwhile the provinces of Agusan del Sur, Province of Dinagat Island and Surigao del Sur conducted their mobilization on October 14-17, 2014. In Agusan del Sur, the model barangay was Brgy. Consuelo in the municipality of Bunawan. The training was conducted at the barangay hall and led by the Municipal Nutrition Action Officer Ms. Elena Bandoy, with the support of the Provincial Nutrition Action Officer Ms. Laniebelle T. Angchangco. Participants were mostly barangay health workers and some mother-leaders.  


Barangay Poblacion, San Agustin, Surigao del Sur was the site of another model barangay. Provincial Nutrition Action Officer Ms. Ermelinda C. Ascarez led  the training at the barangay hall,  together with District Nutrition Program Coordinator Ms. Marilu M. Gallardo, Nutrition Officer II Ms. Miloniza N. Serra and Municipal Nutrition Action Officer Ms. Ronalyn Francisco.  The participants were a combination of municipal personnel, barangay health workers, barangay nutrition scholar and volunteer mothers.


In Cagdianao, Province of Dinagat Islands, the training was conducted at Barangay Poblacion at the conference room of the municipal hall.  The 25 participants were composed of barangay officials, barangay nutrition scholar, barangay health workers and mother-leaders. The training was facilitated by the Municipal Nutrition Action Officer Ms. Enecita Borja and Provincial Nutrition Action Officer Ms. Ma. Lerma B. Erno. 


Surigao del Norte will undertake their community mobilization in the municipality of Claver. NNC Caraga will continue to monitor the conduct of trainings.  ###

10 kumainment bread and pinggang pinoyAccording to World Health Organization (WHO), non-communicable diseases (NCDs) also known as  Lifestyle or behavior diseases such as heart diseases, stroke, diabetes, cancer and chronic respiratory diseases are the leading causes of death globally.These are called such because much of the risk factors associated with them are related to how one lives.Among the important risk factors to NCDs are high blood pressure, high concentrations of cholesterol in the blood, inadequate intake of fruits and vegetables and other fiber-rich foods, overweight or obesity, physical inactivity and tobacco use.

Food intake of the average Filipino has been changing over the years in terms of quantity and quality. Filipinos are now eating more fish, meat, poultry and eggs which are good sources of protein. However, Filipinos are eating less of fruits and vegetables and complex carbohydrates, and more of sugars and syrups, fats and oils. This increase can be attributed to the increased consumption of animal-based foods and decline in fruit and vegetable consumption.

There are current initiatives that are implemented to promote healthy diets for lifestyle-disease prevention and control and the latest strategies are the Nutritional Guidelines for Filipinos (NGF), popularly known as Ten Kumainments and the Pinggang Pinoy.

The Nutritional Guidelines for Filipinos, consisting of ten key messages includes both foodbased and behaviour driven guidelines and addresses current nutritional dietary problems.  The Nutritional  guidelines  aim  to  address  and  prevent  malnutrition  and  diet-related  non-communicable  diseases  such  as  cancer,  diabetes  and  cardiovascular  diseases.The  NGF  was simplified, shortened and translated into 10 KUMAINMENTS (Sigla at Lakas ng Buhay) with simple, concise and clear key messages and NGF icon.  With messages like “Kumain ng ibat-ibang pagkain”, Kumain ng gulay at prutas araw-araw”, and “Panatilihin ang tamang timbang”,individuals are encouraged to eat the right foods, exercise right and pursue a healthy lifestyle in 10 easy rules.

Pinggang Pinoy is a new, easy to understand food guide that uses a familiar food plate model to convey the right food group proportions on a per-meal basis, to meet the body’s energy and nutrient needs of Filipino adults. Pinggang Pinoy is used as a visual tool to help Filipinos adopt healthy eating habits at meal times by delivering effective dietary and healthy lifestyle messages. The “Pinggang Pinoy” can be used side by side with the existing Daily Nutritional Guide (DNG) Pyramid for Filipinos but it will not replace it. According to Food and Nutrition Reaserch Institute (FNRI), Pinggang Pinoy is a quick and easy guide on how much to eat per mealtime, while the DNG Pyramid shows at a glance the whole day food intake recommendation. Both the “Pinggang Pinoy” and the DNG Pyramid for Filipinos are based on the latest science about how our food, drink, and activity choices affect our health.#




Malnutrition usually starts in the first year of life because of poor infant and young child feeding practices. The period of 6 months to 2 years old is a critical period; there is an increased need for proper nutrition. 2 out of 10 children are underweight for age among the 0-5 year old Filipino and 3 out of 10 children are under-height-for-age. The physical and mental damages that will occur during this period is irreversible. Malnourished children have slow growth and development, becomes sickly and will have low performance in school. 

Last January 28, 2015, DOST-FNRI conducted an advocacy orientation on this Malnutrition Reduction Program in Provincial Hall of Surigao del Norte in Surigao City. This package is a nutrition intervention through complementary food blends and snack curls complemented with nutrition education among mothers and caregivers on basic nutrition and proper infant and young child feeding such as breastfeeding, complementary feeding, meal planning, safe food handling and preparation and backyard vegetable gardening. One of our partner agencies on combating malnutrition, Department of Science and Technology -Food and Nutrition Research Institute (DOST-FNRI) developed complementary food blends and snack food which are available for technology transfer to interested entrepreneurs under their the DOST PINOY or the Package for the Improvement of Nutrition of Young Children program. The FNRI provides technical assistance for local government units (LGUs), non-government organizations NGO) and private organizations who are interested to produce the complementary foods for livelihood and for use in their feeding program. The complementary food blends and snack curls include: rice mongo based commodities rich in energy and protein, multi-nutrient growth mix (MGM) fortified with vitamin A, iron, iodine, zinc and folic; and multi-nutrient growth mix (MGM) formulations using fruits and vegetables in ready-to-use sachet.

The Local Government of Gigaquit, Surigao del Norte is a recipient of this program and processing facility; technical expertise and resource persons from FNRI was provided to them to establish the program. The facility is expected to operate on the last week of February or first week of March this year.###

Great News for the Barangay Nutrition Scholars in the Province of Agusan del Norte.The 16thSanggunianPanlalawigan of the Province of Agusan del Norte through the Committee on Social Welfare and Population Development, authored by Honorable Elizabeth Marie R. Calo with Co-Authors Honorable Joseph E. Tomaneng and Rodulfo A. Pitogohad already been approvedThe Sanggunian Resolution No. 117-2014: Resolution Urging the Provincial Social Welfare, Population and Nutrition Services Office to Design a Program for the Granting of Financial Incentives to Deserving Barangay Nutrition Scholars in the Province with Outstanding Performanceand to be implemented for the year 2015.

The Resolution was made after several sessions from March, May and June 2014 conducted by Honorable Elizabeth Marie R. Calo Chairperson on Committee on Social Welfare and Population Developmentthe Office of the SanggunianPanlalawigan together with Ms. Eden A. Amper from Provincial Social Welfare, Population and Nutrition Services Office, Ms.Armi C. Escatron from Provincial Health Office, Ms. Leah L. Tan, Provincial Planning Development Office, Mr. Esteban M. Dagani Provincial Budget Office, Mr. Johnny Y. Oreno, Provincial DILG and Ms. Rowena Cassion Gomez of DOH- National Nutrition Council Caraga Regional Office. Thesaid office had received Resolution No.283-2013 dated last September 5, 2013 from theSanggunianPanlalawigan of La Union to cause allocation funds to cover the monthly allowances of all Barangay Nutrition Scholars (BNS) of La Union and possible introduction of a House Bill that increases the allowance/stipened of BNS. During the initial evaluation of said resolution the committee was thinking of recommending no legislative action to the said measure because it has nothing to do with the province of Agusan del Norte.

However, as the committee gleaned the resolutory clause of the Provincial Council of La Union, it intends to seek support and encourage all SanggunianPanlalawigan in the country to pass related measure and urge their respective Congressmen to sponsor a bill to increase the financial incentives of all Barangay Nutrition Scholars in the country.

Ms. Rowena Cassion-Gomez from National Nutrition Council Caraga, raised her concerns on the BNSs in the region. Under the law, it is prerogative of the Punong Barangay to appoint or replace any barangay officials including the BNS. The Punong Barangay should consider that the incumbent BNS are provided several trainings either by the national or local government agencies. They had already gained enough knowledge and skills they need to perform their duties and functions. Our government has already spent their capability enhancement and yet newly elected Punong Barangays can easily replace them due to the fact that they are co-terminus.

One good example of this case was the former BNS in Barangay Binuangan, Municipality of Tubay in the name of Hilda Guibao who brought pride and honor to the province because she garnered the title Regional Outstanding BNS in 2013, because of the new set of Barangay Officials, the Punong Barangay did not reappoint her but instead replaced her with a new BNS of his choice.

Ms. Eden Amper, District Nutrition Program Coordinator of Agusandelnorte asked the body if the province can increase its counterpart for the honorarium from P300 to P500. According to her, the province allocates only P300 per month, P150-P1,000 from the barangay, and P275-P700 from the municipality.

After thorough discussion and to respond to the said issues, the committee recommended enacting a provincial ordinance that will increase the provincial counterpart for the honorarium of the BNS province-wide and so theThe Sanggunian Resolution No. 117-2014 was made.

Great News Indeed!

CARAGA 2015 Federation Meeting

The National Nutrition Council provides assistance to the local nutrition programs. One of which is its technical assistance to the various federations of the local nutrition workers. As such, the NNC initiates the conduct of federation meetings of the Nutrition Action Officers, District/ City Nutrition Program Coordinators and Barangay Nutrition Scholars.


The BNS Federation had their meeting on February 18, 2015 at Patria’s Inn and Restobar. This was attended by Barangay Nutrition Scholars Federation Officers from Bayugan City, Butuan City, Cabadbaran City, Surigao City, Tandag City, Provinces of Dinagat Island, Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur and Surigao del Sur.  Federation President Ms. Mary B. Lomoljo (Surigao del Sur) presided over the meeting.  Highlight of the meeting is the finalization of their Constitution and By-Laws and the attendance to the upcoming BNS National Conference at General Santos City.


Meanwhile, the NAOs Federation meeting  was also conducted at Patrias Inn and Restobar on February 24, 2015. This was attended by Federation Officers from Bayugan City, Butuan City, Tandag City, Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Province of Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte and Surigao del Sur. The meeting was presided by Federation President Ms. Laniebelle T. Angchangco of Agusan del Sur.  Highlight of the meeting is the finalization of their Constitution and By-Laws and registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the conduct of future activities, such as fund-raising events.


Finally, the D/CNPC First Quarter Meeting was held on March 5, 2015 at Luciana Convention Center. This was attended by D/CNPCs from Surigao City, Butuan City, Province of Dinagat Island and Surigao del Sur. Federation President Ms. Florence R. Dela Cruz (Surigao City) presided over the meeting. Highlights of the meeting is the Presidents Report, especially on the recently concluded D/CNPC National Conference. They also finalized Constitution and By-Laws and will now move for registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Afterwards, the D/CNPCs had an orientation on the filling up of the OBNS scoresheet.  ###

testing salt samples12015The National Nutrition Council with UNICEF organized the National Conference of Regional BantayAsin Task Forcesheld January 22-23, 2015 at the Bayview Park Hotel, Roxas Boulevard, Manila. The Regional BantayAsin Task Forces (RBATF) that was formed all-over the regions have significantly contributed to the supply of adequately-iodized salt by putting in place effective mechanisms for monitoring and enforcement of regulation. The conference aims to generate relevant and appropriate salt iodization initiatives adopted in the regions and lessons learned that may be replicated in regions with similar supply conditions and modalities of distribution. It also aims to generate inputs for stronger linkage and alignment of national and local initiatives.


The presentation and discussion during the two-day event highlighted the National Updates on Universal Salt Iodization Initiatives which Dr. Cecilia S. Acuin, Chief of FNRI-NAMD presented the 2013 NNS Disaggregated Data on UIE and Testing of Iodized Salt. Identified best practices of existing RBATF were also presented. Mayor Liwayway DC. Caramat of the Municipality of Sta. Fe, Nueva Vizcaya shared their active involvement in Salt Checkpoint. She also shared their initiatives for improved program management, presence of internal and external support mechanism and strengthened income generating project (selling of iodized salt) of BNS Federation.Dr.Parolita A. Mission, NNC Regional Office VII NPC presented “Mainstreaming the Salt Iodization in Nutrition Programs” wherein their Regional Nutrition Committee is acting as their RBTF. She also shared how they mobilize partners.


The NNC Regional Office together with partners from DOH and FDA were requested to bring collected salt samples from public market and major supermarket. This was tested using the WYD Iodine Checker which was demonstrated by Ms. Annabelle V. Briones and Ms. Josie L. Pondevida from DOST-ITDI. Majority of the salt samples brought were low in iodine content. The required iodine content is 30-70 ppm for salt iodization for market and 15 ppm from household.


The National Conference of Regional BantayAsin Task Forces ended with a challenge to regions to revive and strengthen their RBATF in which NNC Caraga Regional Office is up for the challenge.#