7.20.2014

Friday, July 18, 2014

DSWD-Caraga turns over new OSCA office to city gov’t

By Jennifer P. Gaitano

BUTUAN CITY, July 18 (PIA) – The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Caraga turned-over on Friday the new building of the Office for Senior Citizens Affairs (OSCA) situated at the back of the City Library at J. Rosales Avenue here.

Pastor Charlie Prior, Moral Recovery Program head of the city government led the blessing of the new OSCA building at the same time the Geriacare Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Center. Senior Citizens, city officials, and representatives from government agencies also witnessed said activity.

Imelda Nonan, head of OSCA-Butuan acknowledged the presence of all the guests and participants who witnessed the ceremony. She also thanked the senior citizens for its continued active participation in its activities.

Also, Leah Mendoza, city administrator expressed her happiness, thanks and gratitude to DSWD-Caraga for the funds it has provided for the completion of the said building amounting to P3-M. "As a senior citizen, I am so happy to see this building and I hope that my co-senior citizens could really avail of the services and programs from OSCA," she said.

Mendoza added that DSWD-Caraga has also extended another P3-M for the establishment of the building for the Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) which will soon rise.

“Thank you so much for the support of our DSWD officials and personnel for continuously providing the welfare of our senior citizens and PWDs," she remarked.

Meanwhile, Angelita Amista, Protective Service Unit head of DSWD-Caraga congratulated the OSCA personnel and the city government for its effort in complying the requirements for DSWD’s grassroots buttom-up-budgeting where the P3-M fund was taken from.

"Congratulations to the city government and OSCA for having this project. This is the first OSCA with a Geriacare in Caraga region. We have been providing funds for the establishment of OSCA offices but usually more on socialization services while here in Butuan City, it's a package of services that will cater to the senior citizens," shared Amista.

The following are the programs and services of OSCA: 1) Physical Therapy Treatment; 2) Eye Care Services; 3) Dental Services; 4) Quasi-Judicial Proceedings; 5) Mortuary Assistance Program; 6) Social Pension Program; 7) Issuance of the senior citizens ID cards and booklets; 8) Socialization activities; 9) Pre-orientation Program; 10) OSCA goes to Barangay Program; 11) Health Care Lecture; 12) PhilHealth Para Sa MAAS (Matanda At Aregladong Senior); 13) OSCA Monitoring Services; & 14) Physical fitness training. (JPG/PIA-Caraga)


Business Resource Center launched in AgSur town

By David M. Suyao

SAN FRANCISCO, Agusan del Sur, July 18 (PIA) - The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) with the Agusan del Sur Chamber of Commerce and Industry Foundation, Inc. (ADSCCIFI) and the local government of San Francisco recently launched the Agusan del Sur Business Resource Center (BRC) here in time with the celebration of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Development Week on July 14, 2014.

The celebration, according to DTI Agusan del Sur provincial director Lolita Dorado, espouses the firm commitment of the state in the promotion, growth and development of the MSME especially in the countryside.

“The objectives of this BRC are to promote MSME services in partnership with the private sector. It is expected to create awareness on the importance of MSME in the development of the local economy and also to promote other benefits available for MSMEs,” Dorado said.

DTI shared the amount of P502,061 while the cooperator which is the ADSCCIFI shared P255,685 in order to realize the operation of the business resource center for the equipments and facilities needed in order to fully operate.

“The business resource center is one of the identified projects of DTI under the Shared Service Facility. All the provinces in Caraga Region are provided with the business resource center that will serve as support system to nurture and facilitate the growth of the microenterprises and small and medium enterprises operating within the priority industry cluster,” Dorado said.

Acknowledging the part of the local government unit (LGU) in the BRC operations, San Francisco Mayor Jenny de Asis said she is very glad to have the BRC in San Francisco that pictures the strengthened partnership of the LGU, the DTI and the business industry in the municipality.

“Since this is a shared responsibility between us, we, in the LGU committed to provide one personnel to man the center,” de Asis said.

“I am very glad and proud that under my leadership, the first ever launching of the BRC which is regionwide happened here in San Francisco. I am therefore looking forward that members of the business chamber will be frequent here in the center to enjoy what it can offer while the center will be serving its purpose,” Freddie Mero, President of the Agusan del Sur Chamber of Commerce and Industry said.

The launching of the BRC in San Francisco was highlighted by the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement between DTI regional director Brielgo O. Pagaran and ADSCCIFI president Freddie C. Mero witnessed by DTI provincial director Lolita Dorado and San Francisco Mayor Jenny De Asis. (DMS/PIA-Agusan del Sur)


Nursing mothers urged to continue giving breastmilk to babies after maternity leave

By Czarina Teresita S. Martinez

MANILA, July 18 (PIA) - Did you know that nursing mothers can continue giving breastmilk to their babies even if they have to return to work after maternity leave?

The revised Nutritional Guidelines for Filipinos (NGF) recommends "breastfeed infants exclusively from birth up to 6 months then give appropriate complementary foods while continuing breastfeeding for 2 years and beyond for optimum growth and development".

The NGF was developed by nutrition experts led by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST).

Working mothers who are lactating and resuming work can express breastmilk while in the workplace.

Expressed breastmilk can be collected in sterile bottles and stored in the refrigerator or container insulated with ice.

Breast milk stored in the refrigerator can last for 24 hours, while when stored in the freezer can last for 3 months.

Caregivers at home can give expressed breastmilk while the mother is at work.

In times when the mother and the baby are together, it is best to breastfeed from the mother.

Breastfeeding promotes emotional bonding and loving relationship between the mother and the baby.

Administrators of workplaces, public places like malls and even schools are enjoined to setup breastfeeding stations where mothers can either express breastmilk or practice breastfeeding with privacy.

Let us promote, support, and practice breastfeeding.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City, E-Mail: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph or mar_v_c@yahoo.com, Telefax: (02) 8372934, (02) 8273164, or call (02) 8372071 local 2296 or visit our website: http:www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI S&T Media Services/PIA-Caraga)


NPA Commander killed during failed IP community attack

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, July 18 (PIA) -  One of the 12 New People's Army (NPA) rebels killed during the failed attack at the Indigenous People’s (IP) Community in Brgy Sta. Irene, Prosperidad, Agusan del Sur last July 15, 2014 was one of the high-ranking NPA leader in Agusan del Sur identified as Joseph Tajora Cainong also known as Ka Malik or Alas the Secretary of Guerilla Front 8, North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee.

Cainong was identified and confirmed by his relatives, other civilians in the area, and his former comrades who already returned to mainstream society.

Cainong led the NPA composite group who attacked Datu Calpit at his residence in the said barangay which resulted to his death and 11 of his comrades, recovery of eight high powered firearms, death of four baganis (IP warriors), and wounding of Datu Calpit.

MGen Ricardo Visaya, Commander of 4th Infantry Division said, “It is now their (NPAs) fault why these unfortunate situations are happening to them despite all the peace negotiations and programs the government have offered to them. This could have been avoided if they also surrendered peacefully and started a new life with their families in their communities just like what their former comrades did. Their desperate choice of pursuing their meaningless armed struggle will always end to  tragic loss ofFilipino lives.”

“We say this message again to other NPA members who are still living in the idea of armed struggle; we have a beautiful and wonderful program for you if you will go back to mainstream society. The whole government will ensure that all the necessary support will be provided to you and your family,” MGen Visaya added.

Guerilla Front 8 operates in central part of Agusan del Sur and remain as the credible deterrent to development in that area. Its nearby NPA units such as Guerilla Front 21B which operates in Northern part of Agusan del Sur have already lost its command and control because their former front secretary, Julieto Canoy a.k.a Ka Bom was captured last 2011 and he is now actively supporting the government in denouncing the abuses of the NPAs; Guerilla Front 34 (Western part) and GF 14 (Southern Part) have already trimmed down its members due to the conduct of simultaneous Community Organizing for Peace and Development (COPD) Operations in the area. Most of their members have already surrendered to the government and chose to live peacefully with their families in their communities. Their surrender was witnessed during the formal acceptance held in different areas in Northern Mindanao dubbed as “Pagbabalik Loob” part 1, 2, 3 and 4. (4ID PA/PIA-Caraga)


Feature: ‘Obesity gene’ probed in the Filipino population

By Jacus S. Nacis

MANILA, July 18 (PIA) - In order to understand weight gain and weight loss, we need to look into the triad of environment, lifestyle, and genetics.

The pairing of environment and lifestyle as a factor in understanding body weight is an established norm.

Adding genetics in the picture bring forth quite interesting tales to tell.

Previous researches about the fat mass and obesity associated (FTO) gene suggested that individuals who have the high risk version of the FTO gene have the tendency to become obese. FTO gene comes in two versions: the high and the low-risk form.

The BBC News website in 2013 reported that individuals with high risk copies of the FTO gene are thought to be 70% more likely to become obese.

This BBC report was investigated further by a pioneering study on nutritional genomics by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST).

Researchers from FNRI-DOST examined more than a hundred Filipino adults from Ilocos, Bicol and Metro Manila.

The FNRI study focused on the possible contribution of the FTO gene in the increasing trend of obesity in the country. The study combined the utility of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and gene sequencing technology to determine the versions of the FTO gene.

Majority of these adult participants carry the low-risk version. However, regardless of the body mass index (BMI), more than 30 percent harbor the high risk version of the gene.

The genetic tendency towards becoming obese in this portion of Filipino adults is present even among those who are considered normal and healthy.

The high risk version posed 24 percent chance of gaining more weight compared to those who have the low risk version of the FTO gene.

Interestingly, the probability increased twice when the carrier of the high risk version of the gene falls short of the recommended energy nutrient intake (RENI) for energy, protein, carbohydrates, and fat.

Relevant findings of the study underscore the importance of meeting the recommended dietary intake especially when an individual is prone to gain more weight due to genetic variation.

In this segment of the Filipino adult population, the effect of the high risk version of the FTO gene is not the sole contributor of the propensity to gain weight.

Genes might regulate the capture, storage, and release of energy from the foods that we eat but it is equally important to note that obesity also thrives in an environment abundant with calorie-rich foods and with fewer opportunities for physical activity.

With the Philippines going more urbanized, the environment previously described can perhaps be a relevant factor of the population shifting towards unhealthy weight gain. This premise, however, needs to be confirmed further.

Without dismissing what genetic factors can contribute to our total well-being, the need to live a healthy lifestyle through proper diet and regular exercise is still the best way to combat unhealthy weight gain.

As the 9th message of the 2012 Nutritional Guidelines for Filipinos highlighted: “Attain normal body weight through proper diet and moderate physical activity to maintain good health and help prevent obesity”.


For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num: 8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


NFA keeps daily rice price monitoring

By Greg Tataro Jr.

TANDAG CITY, July 18 (PIA) – In order to shield consumers from unscrupulous traders, the National Food Authority (NFA) in Surigao del Sur headed by officer-in-charge (OIC) provincial manager Gleen Echin has continued to keep an eye not only on rice prices but also on the quality of grains being sold in markets.

NFA assistant provincial manager Alvin Balatero admitted that a slight increase in  rice prices was noted for over a month now, citing a peso increase in commercial regular-milled rice (RMR).

The said office conducts a regular daily price monitoring.

Also, he warned that their office is not going to spare no one involved in anomalous trading like hoarding or mixing government rice with commercial variety.

Meanwhile, Balatero stressed that NFA has maintained prices at P27 and P32 per kilo for the regular and premium variety, respectively, for rice supplied to 23 authorized Bigasan Sa Palengke (BSP) outlets established province-wide.

He told that every outlet is allowed to get up to 100 bags of NFA rice.

Balatero added that NFA here has a buffer of 56,126 bags that is estimated to last for about 15 days.

Surigao del Sur has a daily rice requirement (DRR) of 3,880 bags. (NGBT/Radyo ng Bayan/PIA-Surigao del Sur)


DSWD-13 conducts debriefing to victims of conflict

By Theresa D. Barsobia

BUTUAN CITY, July 18 (PIA) - The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Caraga conducted Psychosocial Processing (PSP) to 30 civilians affected during the conflict in Brgy. Hamogaway, Baguyan City and Sta. Irene, Prosperidad, Agusan del Sur on Wednesday.

These were the civilians composed of 15 adults, 11 of whom were female and 4 were male and 15 children (8 female and 7 male) of different ages who had unexpectedly suffered a trauma event as they had witnessed the exchanged of gun fires and had seen dead armed men right before them.

The department was able to provide these civilians the Psychosocial Processing (PSP) on July 16, 2014 at the Field Office within 42-hours following the said incident. They were afforded with such service to give them a venue wherein they will feel secure and they can freely share their experiences, thoughts and feelings, and gradually be relieved from emotional, psychological, and physical suffering caused by the traumatic experience. They were handled by licensed psychologists and registered social workers.

It can be recalled that on July 15, 2014 the province was confounded with series of rebel attacks in Brgy. Hamogaway, Bayugan City and Sta. Irene, Prosperidad, Agusan del Sur. (Social Marketing Unit/DSWD-13/PIA-Caraga)


'Glenda' victims offered SSS loans, advanced pension payments

MANILA, July 18 (PIA) - The Social Security System (SSS) has offered a calamity relief package for members, which allows them to renew their salary loans, avail of house repair loans with easier terms, and advance their pension payments, following the onslaught of Typhoon Glenda on Wednesday, July 16.

SSS Vice President May Catherine Ciriaco, Officer-in-Charge of the SSS Lending and Asset Management Division, said the SSS calamity relief package is extended to members in areas declared under state of calamity by the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), which as of 18 July 2014 includes the provinces of Albay, Camarines Sur, Samar, Laguna, Naga City, and the town of Obando in Bulacan.

“This relief assistance was set up to help our members in urgent need of funds during these times,” Ciriaco said. “They can use their loan proceeds and advance pensions for food, safety water, and medicines, and to pay for other expenses resulting from the damages caused by Typhoon Glenda.”

The SSS calamity relief package includes the Salary Loan Early Renewal Program (SLERP), which enables existing borrowers in affected areas to renew their salary loans ahead of the prescribed period under the regular loan guidelines. Members with sanctions on loan renewal due to their availment of the SSS Loan Penalty Condonation Program are also allowed to apply for SLERP, provided that they live or work in a declared calamity area.

“The SSS will also waive the one-percent service fee charged on salary loan applications, both for new and renewed loans,” Ciriaco said, adding that the same eligibility requirements, interest rate, and repayment terms on salary loans will still apply.

The assistance package also offers qualified SSS pensioners with an option to get in advance their three-month's worth of pension. Availment of advance pension payments requires submission of an application form duly certified by the Barangay Chairman.

“Pensioners may also attach a certification issued by the Barangay Chairman, DSWD, or NDRRMC that attests their residency in the typhoon-affected area. We will only accept applications without any of these certifications if the pensioner's given address is within an officially declared calamity area and it is the same as that in our database,” Ciriaco explained.

The SSS official also said that the regular release of pensions will automatically resume right after the three-month period covered by the advance payments.

Aside from the SLERP and three-month advance pensions, the SSS has also reduced the interest rates for the SSS Direct House Repair and Improvement Loan to six-percent per annum. The service fee is also waived to further help the members who need to rebuild their homes, said Ciriaco.

The deadline of submission of applications under the SSS calamity relief package is on October 31, 2014 except for the Direct House Repair and Improvement Loan, which is up to one year from issuance of its SS Circular. Application forms are available at SSS branches or may be downloaded from the SSS website (www.sss.gov.ph).


For SSS members residing in affected areas not yet officially declared in state of calamity, the SSS will update them through a media advisory as soon as the NDRRMC has completed its assessment of damages. (SSS/PIA-Caraga)