THE National Nutrition Council (NNC)-Central Visayas launched Wednesday, June 29, 2022, the 48th Nutrition Month celebration with the theme "New Normal na Nutrisyon, Sama-samang Gawan ng Solusyon."

This year’s celebration, which will kick off on July 1, aims for a collaborative effort among local government units (LGUs) and the private sector to bolster nutrition, especially in raising awareness on its significance in developing resilience and recovery from the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.

The NNC specifically called on its partners, LGUs and the private sector to collaborate and broaden the impact of their projects that aim to address hunger and malnutrition, which it said have been exacerbated by the pandemic and subsequent economic upheaval.

Dr. Parolita A. Mission, Regional Nutrition Program coordinator of the NNC-Central Visayas, said in a press conference Wednesday, June 29, that the region has over 72,000 children under the age of five who are suffering from long-term malnutrition (stunting) and 17,884 are acutely malnourished (wasted).

She said the sudden change in lifestyle brought about by the new normal has also affected overnutrition, with 23,441 children under the age of five assessed as overweight, based on their data gathered in 2021.

She said aside from the effects of the pandemic, ensuring a funding program for nutrition remained a challenge for the council.

The NNC-Central Visayas is confident, though, that partnerships with different LGUs and organizations will allow them to create a mechanism that will help address the problem on malnutrition and hunger.

"We are encouraging different sectors from the region to participate in this pursuit in search for long-term solutions addressing the old age problem, which is malnutrition," Mission said.

The NNC-Central Visayas has partnered with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Agriculture (DA), Regional Nutrition Committee Technical Working Group, NNC-Central Visayas’ Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Network, Municipality of Consolacion and its barangay nutrition committees, and the Municipality of Borbon headed by the Municipal Nutrition Action Officer of Borbon Cebu Dr. Corazon V. Dotillos.

Mission said this year’s Nutrition Month celebration will start at 1:30 p.m. of July 1 with a program at SM City Consolacion in Cebu that will showcase the Tutok Kainan Supplementation Program, Idol ko si Nanay Season 2, and First 1,000 Days Program.

NNC is looking forward to further improvements in its campaign toward nutrition resilience, she added. (Irish Delima, CNU intern)