(PAGASA 24-HOUR PUBLIC WEATHER FORECAST as of Tuesday, 05 March 2024) Northeast Monsoon affecting Luzon. Butuan City, Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte and Surigao del Sur, will experience partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms due to Easterlies/Localized Thunderstorms. Possible flash floods or landslides during severe thunderstorms. Moderate to strong winds coming from Northeast to East will prevail with moderate to rough seas (1.2 to 2.8 meters).


Sunday, January 14, 2024

Caraga nutrition council recognizes barangay scholars as community mobilizers

By Jennifer Gaitano

A total of 35 newly-designated Barangay Nutrition Scholars (BNS) actively participated in the learning session conducted by the local government of Butuan City and the National Nutrition Council (NNC) Caraga, held on January 8-12, 2024, at the Grand Palace Hotel, Butuan City. Photo courtesy of NNC-Caraga.

The National Nutrition Council (NNC) Caraga head and regional nutrition program coordinator, Dr. Niño Archie Labordo,  recognized the significant role of the barangay nutrition scholars (BNS) as mobilizers in the community.

Labordo emphasized that there have been big improvements in the nutrition status of the residents because of the dedication and commitment of the BNS in monitoring their nutrition, particularly that of the children.

“They also engage the community to action by organizing families into clusters of 20-25 households or into community-based organizations working and helping the barangay to improve the nutrition situation among the vulnerable,” said Labordo.

“Basically, the BNS locates and identifies malnourished children through a community survey referred to as Operation Timbang Plus. This survey involves weighing and measuring the length or height of all preschoolers and interviewing mothers to determine how the child is cared for, the resources available in the family, and their participation in nutrition and related interventions,” added Labordo.

He shared that  to prepare a potential BNS for deployment in a  barangay, a BNS should undergo training under the supervision of the District/City Nutrition Program Coordinator or the designated BNS trainer-supervisor. The training combines didactic training with 20 days of practicum.

With this, the local government unit of Butuan City, through the City Health-Nutrition Office in coordination with the NNC-Caraga, conducted a five-day Barangay Nutrition Scholar (BNS) Training Course on January 8-12, 2024, at the Grand Palace Hotel, Butuan City.

“Around 35 newly-designated BNS attended the basic course to gain knowledge, attitudes, and skills needed for effective performance of the tasks of identifying the malnourished, monitoring the malnourished, and referring them to appropriate service providers,” said Labordo.

Labordo further explained that the barangay nutrition scholar shall be a barangay-based volunteer worker responsible for delivering nutrition services and other related activities, such as community health, backyard food production, environmental sanitation, culture, mental feeding, and family planning, to the barangay.

The participating Barangay Nutrition Scholars in Butuan City underwent the training course and learned different strategies on how they could better perform their duties and responsibilities in their respective barangays. Photo courtesy of NNC-Caraga.

Based on NNC’s data, a total of 49,779 BNS are deployed in 39,942 barangays nationwide. These BNS are under the supervision of over 400 District/City Nutrition Program Coordinators (D/CNPCs).

The Barangay Nutrition Scholar (BNS) Program is a human resource development strategy of the Philippine Plan of Action for Nutrition that involves the recruitment, training, deployment, and supervision of volunteer workers called the Barangay Nutrition Scholars (BNS).

Presidential Decree (PD) No. 1569 (1979) mandated the deployment of one  BNS in every barangay in the country to monitor the nutritional status of children and other nutritionally at-risk groups and link them with nutrition and nutrition-related service providers. 

PD 1569 also mandated the NNC to administer the program in cooperation with local government units. (JPG, PIA-Caraga, with a report from NNC-Caraga)