Tagbilaran City prepares a COVID-19 recovery plan

           Despite the pandemic, Tagbilaran City is hopeful for the future. In fact, a series of planning sessions are currently being conducted to come up with a recovery plan which aims to rebuild confidence and seek ways to adapt to the new normal. Assisted by Dr. Rosalinda Paredes of the USAID-SURGE and Arch. Liza Macalandag, the City Planning and Development Office (CPDO) served as the secretariat of the Technical Working Group (TWG).

         The CPDO led by Engr. Estella Margate would be responsible in documenting the proceedings of meetings, facilitates sectoral sessions, and data gathering. City Mayor John Geesnell “BABA” Yap heads the TWG, supported by the various department heads in the City and private stakeholders from the business, academe, and non-governmental organizations. The TWG has the main responsibilities of assessing the risks and vulnerabilities of Tagbilaran City in the midst of COVID-19; review the level of preparedness and response interventions in managing the risks; assess the challenges and impacts to the economy, environment, infrastructure, and social sector. The TWG will formulate the sectoral strategies and plans to enable the City to recover and respond from the impact of the COVID-19 and come up with a Local Economy Re-Start Plan as required by the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA).

          Mayor Yap recognizes the importance of a recovery roadmap, “Given the negative impacts brought about by the pandemic to our employees, to our students, to our businesses, and to our families, it is imperative that we should plan and analyze our options. We do not know when this pandemic will end, we are not given a timeline. Thus, we need all the ideas to craft a plan that will reshape our strategy to ensure resilience in situations like COVID-19. A plan that would capacitate every sector to rise up and move forward”, Yap said.

 

Tagbilaran City celebrates Nutrition Month

To strengthen Tagbilaran City’s stance against the COVID-19 pandemic, the 46th Nutrition Month celebration was intensified among the mothers and children in all the 15 barangays. Well-nourished children develop strong immunity. Online meal planning consultation among the pregnant and lactating mothers were conducted. The City Nutrition Committee in partnership with the City Vet and Agriculture Office also provided seedlings to the families with malnourished children. City Nutrition Officer Rey Delos Santos said that the City Health also provided ready-to-use-supplementary-food to identified malnourished children. Drumbeating the theme “Batang Pinoy SANA TALL… Iwas stunting, SAMA ALL”, an information education campaign was launched in the radio program of the City Government and was flashed in the LED walls all around Tagbilaran. Patients in the City Health Office also got to watch nutrition promotional videos.

The theme aims to promote awareness and mobilize actions to address stunting.  It calls for a collective vision of having taller Filipino children by preventing stunting through the participation of government, non-government organizations, civil society, business, academe, communities and families.

Stunting or pagkabansot in Filipino, is the impaired growth and development experienced by children due to poor nutrition, repeated infection and inadequate psychosocial stimulation. Stunting can lead to low educational performance, lost productivity, increased risk of developing non-communicable diseases (NCDs), and even death. The economic cost of stunting is high equivalent to 1.5 to 3% of the country’s gross domestic product.

The chosen theme underscores the urgency of addressing stunting considering that the Philippines is one of the 10 countries with the most stunted children in the world.  Currently, 1 in 3 or 30% of Filipino children 0-59 months old are stunted with stunting highest among 12-23 months at 36.6% (2018 ENNS, DOST-FNRI).  The high prevalence of stunting continues due to the limited scale by which nutrition and related services and programs have been delivered.  This is exacerbated by the fact that many Filipinos believe that stunting is hereditary (namamana) and not an illness.

Stunting is irreversible and thus must be prevented with proper nutrition and care in the first 1000 days or the period of conception until the child’s second birthday.   Addressing stunting requires all stakeholders to work together to ensure that families have access to nutritious food, have the knowledge and skills to feed their children from locally sourced food, have access to and seek services especially in the first 1000 days as provided in the Kalusugan at Nutrisyon ng Mag-Nanay Act or RA 11148.  By raising awareness on stunting, families should be able to understand that stunting is not just a problem of being short but results to poor mental development resulting to poor school performance and low wages as adults. 

Tagbilaran City celebrates Nutrition Month

To strengthen Tagbilaran City’s stance against the COVID-19 pandemic, the 46th Nutrition Month celebration was intensified among the mothers and children in all the 15 barangays. Well-nourished children develop strong immunity. Online meal planning consultation among the pregnant and lactating mothers were conducted. The City Nutrition Committee in partnership with the City Vet and Agriculture Office also provided seedlings to the families with malnourished children. City Nutrition Officer Rey Delos Santos said that the City Health also provided ready-to-use-supplementary-food to identified malnourished children. Drumbeating the theme “Batang Pinoy SANA TALL… Iwas stunting, SAMA ALL”, an information education campaign was launched in the radio program of the City Government and was flashed in the LED walls all around Tagbilaran. Patients in the City Health Office also got to watch nutrition promotional videos.

The theme aims to promote awareness and mobilize actions to address stunting.  It calls for a collective vision of having taller Filipino children by preventing stunting through the participation of government, non-government organizations, civil society, business, academe, communities and families.

Stunting or pagkabansot in Filipino, is the impaired growth and development experienced by children due to poor nutrition, repeated infection and inadequate psychosocial stimulation. Stunting can lead to low educational performance, lost productivity, increased risk of developing non-communicable diseases (NCDs), and even death. The economic cost of stunting is high equivalent to 1.5 to 3% of the country’s gross domestic product.

The chosen theme underscores the urgency of addressing stunting considering that the Philippines is one of the 10 countries with the most stunted children in the world.  Currently, 1 in 3 or 30% of Filipino children 0-59 months old are stunted with stunting highest among 12-23 months at 36.6% (2018 ENNS, DOST-FNRI).  The high prevalence of stunting continues due to the limited scale by which nutrition and related services and programs have been delivered.  This is exacerbated by the fact that many Filipinos believe that stunting is hereditary (namamana) and not an illness.

Stunting is irreversible and thus must be prevented with proper nutrition and care in the first 1000 days or the period of conception until the child’s second birthday.   Addressing stunting requires all stakeholders to work together to ensure that families have access to nutritious food, have the knowledge and skills to feed their children from locally sourced food, have access to and seek services especially in the first 1000 days as provided in the Kalusugan at Nutrisyon ng Mag-Nanay Act or RA 11148.  By raising awareness on stunting, families should be able to understand that stunting is not just a problem of being short but results to poor mental development resulting to poor school performance and low wages as adults. 

Tagbilaran City’s Kalinaw offers help to those distressed

Assistance from the City Government comes in various ways. Aside from the relief goods, free vitamins, food coupons, food packs, and cash assistance, help also comes in terms of mental and emotional support. KALINAW, the mental health awareness initiative led by the City
Government of Tagbilaran through the City Health Office and supported by the Department of Health, provides free online counseling sessions to those who are undergoing anxieties and mental health difficulties, especially during this COVID-19 pandemic. City Mayor John Geesnell “BABA” Yap stressed the importance of having an emotional support during these challenging times, “Looking after our mental health and emotional well-being is just as important as looking
after our physical health, particularly at this time when so much remains unknown and uncertain.  The mental wellness and emotional well-being of our constituents remain on top of our priorities. Kalinaw is prepared to provide that much-needed support”, Yap said. 

Kalinaw also has activities catered to provide meaningful recreation. You can readily access the google drive containing the materials at https//cut.ly/byCF5rs.  The City Government and the Kalinaw Mental Wellness Team are ready to guide the Tagbilaranons in this journey, hoping to rise from this ordeal as one stronger, better, and the braver Tagbilaran City. For assistance,
just schedule an appointment by messaging the official Facebook Page of Kalinaw. Clients need to include the date and time of their availability. Once an inquiry is made, a google form will be provided. Once you fill-out this form, a counselor will assess the nature of the concerns and determine the best method to help.  A notification message will be sent to the client once an appointment has been scheduled. A client will then be scheduled for an online session. Counselors are available for online counseling during Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 7 to 9 pm and Saturdays and Sundays from 8 to 8 pm. The Kalinaw Mental Wellness Team works closely with other mental health advocacy groups in Bohol led by PagPaKaBuhi Center and Project Bohol: Mental Health Awareness.

 

Tagbilaran City capacitates barangay responders

Barangay Health Emergency Responder Teams (BHERT) are the unsung heroes in this time of pandemic. They go out every day and risk their lives to make sure that we are safe. And it is just fitting that the City Government made sure they are protected and capacitated in the course of their work. Thus, a training was conducted facilitated jointly by the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) and the City Health Office. The training was the first in the series of barangay trainings dubbed as the “Strengthening BHERT’s Capacity during the COVID-19 Pandemic”. The module of ReachHealth-USAID was used in the training. Physical distancing was strictly observed as there were only 10 participants seated apart in the room. 

The activity covered important updates about COVID-19, reviewed the roles and functions of the BHERTs, and presented guidelines on Infection, Prevention and Control. CDRMM Gerard Lavadia and Chao Longjas, along with City Nutrition Officer Rey Delos Santos facilitated the lectures.

Emphasis was placed in understanding the role of prevention and control in the context of preparedness, readiness, and response against the infectious disease. The session also demonstrated various measures of prevention and control of COVID-19 appropriate to home settings. Various video presentations were also shown to clearly guide the BHERTS about proper handwashing, physical distancing, respiratory hygiene, home quarantine, isolation, cleaning, and disinfection. City Mayor John Geesnell “BABA” Yap lauded the efforts of the CDRRM and City Health, “As much as we would like to protect our citizenry from being infected with COVID-19, we are also mindful of the welfare of our barangay health workers. Capacitating them to perform their tasks correctly is fitting, but enabling them to also protect themselves and their family is commendable. We appreciate and recognize the efforts of our CDRRM and City Health personnel for spearheading this initiative”, Yap said.  

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