Sto Domingo, Ilocos Sur - A total of 34 Barangay Nutrition Scholars (BNS) of this town participated in the 2-day training on the Department of Science and Technology- Package for the Improvement of Nutrition of Young Children (DOST PINOY) through the initiative of the Department of Science and Technology Provincial S&T Center – Ilocos Sur (DOST PSTC-IS) last August 31 and September 1.

The training is being done in collaboration with the Food and Nutrition Training Unit (FNTU) of the Department of Science and Technology- Food and Nutrition Research Institute (DOST- FNRI) and the Ilocos Sur Polytechnic State College (ISPSC) as part of the Malnutrition Reduction Program (MRP) using the DOST PINOY strategy.

The training is part of the package which aims to reduce the prevalence of underweight children through the conduct of capacity-building activities for the community health workforce and the conduct of the 120-day feeding using DOST FNRI-developed complementary foods. It is also one of the interventions identified under the Community Empowerment thru Science and Technology (CEST) Program currently implemented in the municipality.

“Maganda itong training na gagawin natin dahil makakatulong ito na maimprove ang kalusugan at nutrisyon ng mga bata at mapalawak ang kaalaman natin tungkol sa MRP,” said Engr. Russel Alcanciado, Sto Domingo Municipal Planning and Development Coordinator.

On the other hand, Engr. Jordan L. Abad, Provincial S&T Director presented the rationale for the activity and the background of the CEST Program, one of the flagship programs of the DOST to help communities become more self-sufficient. He emphasized the importance of training the participants and their role in successfully implementing an MRP.

Modules discussed included the following: Module 1 (Batayang Nutrisyon Madaling Pag-aralan), Module 2 (Maayos at Ligtas na Pagbubuntis, Ating Tiyakin), Module 3 (Pagpapasuso, Tanging the Best kay Beybi), Module 6 (Pag-aalala'y Pawiin, Gawing Ligtas ang Pagkain); Module 5 (Meal Plan Ni Nanay), Module 4 (Ok na Ok! Sa Pagbibigay ng Karagdagang Pagkain), and Module 7 (Halina’t Mag-Gulayan tayo sa Bakuran).

A demonstration on the preparation and mixing of the complementary food blends which will be used in the feeding program was also conducted after the lectures.

Cherry Tuzon, Municipal Nutrition Action Officer of Sto Domingo, expressed hope that more trainings related to malnutrition reduction will be implemented not only in the municipality of Sto. Domingo but also in the whole province of Ilocos Sur.

Meanwhile, Janneth Damcil, Barangay Nutrition Scholar, expressed her gratitude to the DOST for conducting such training. “We are very thankful that you shared this kind of information with us, especially with the new BNS in Sto. Domingo. We can now improve the health condition of children in our respective barangays,” said Damcil.

“Nakita ko na very active kayo dito sa activity, maswerte po tayo dahil ang CEST program ng DOST-1 ay nakapriority sa Brgy. Nagbettedan pero ang training ngayon ay idinagdag ang iba pang mga barangay ng bayan ng Sto. Domingo,” said Dr. Perlita F. Tomas, Head of Research and Extension of ISPSC, in her closing remarks.

Resource persons in the training included DOST-FNRI staff composed of Christelle Lois Bayalas, Filipiniana Bragas, and Jane Jasmine Sune while ISPSC counterpart lecturers included Dr. Joanna Marie Guarin, Marnesse Sobremonte, Dr. Lou Khristine D. Racca, and Mr. Peter Paul Lazo.  (By Emil Joe Dangpa, DOST-I)