Sunday, August 5, 2012

Normin’s silent heroes

The month of July witnessed several events of significant contributions to the development of the nation, such as the Blood Donor’s Month which was focused  on the theme “Be A Hero, Give Blood” and the Nutrition Month which revolved the theme “Pagkain ng Gulay Ugaliin, Araw-araw Itong Ihain.”
Such celebrations proved the relevance of the saying “Homo homini Deus est.” This supreme practical maxim fits very well the purpose driven life, because the purpose of life is not primarily “to be happy - -but to matter, to be productive to be useful, to have it make some difference that you have lived at all.” And this, indeed, defines the lives of our blood donors who unselfishly donate blood so that others may have another chance to live.
Statistically speaking, “Five to ten minutes of your time plus 350 ml. of your blood equals one life save.” And this equation could be supported by some statistical data which would tell us that in this time of the year last year some 9,352 bags or units of blood had been served to 6,076 patients in Misamis Oriental. These blood donors are NorMin’s silent heroes, and to them we give our salute and respect.
On the other hand, our mothers who have endlessly labored “carrying the babies inside their wombs for nine months, in their arms for three years, and in their hearts until the day they die,” are also silent heroes who deserve the right to the information, care and support to protect their health and wellbeing before, during and after pregnancy, as well as that of their newborn babies well into childhood.
While we acknowledge the nutritional value of vegetables to one’s health, we should not forget the value of breastfeeding. It may be recalled that last year’s Nutrition Month centered on the theme “Isulong ang Breastfeeding Tsek-Tama, Sapat, Eklsusibo.”
The aim was a very noble one, because it encouraged correct breastfeeding practices nationwide. It taught mothers the significance of skin-to-skin contact of mother and baby immediately after birth and breastfeeding within the first hour of life.
It sought to encourage mothers that a small amount of breast milk is sufficient for baby during the first week, and that with frequent feeding the supply will eventually increase.
More important was the aspect on exclusive feeding which means giving only breast milk to baby during the first six months. However, the finding of the 2011 Family Health Survey reveals that only 27 percent of all mothers practice exclusive breastfeeding in the Philippines.
Exclusive breastfeeding is recommended up to 6 months of age, with continued breastfeeding along with appropriate complementary foods up to two years of age or beyond.
Statistics show that for exclusive breastfeeding, CAR tops in the entire Philippines with 49.2 percent, followed by Region 2 with 40.8 percent.
Region 10 has only 25.2 percent, while Region 4A registered the lowest with only 18.8 percent. These figures reflect an imperative need for a stronger advocacy to inform the mothers the importance of breastfeeding and to make them understand that a baby who is being breastfed is most likely “to avoid the risk of malnutrition, infection and early grave.”
It is worth mentioning that a research on breastfeeding duration and academic achievement at 10 years which used a cohort of 2900 women who were enrolled at 18 weeks’ gestation with 2868 live-born children showed that ten-year-old children who were predominantly breastfed for 6 months or longer in infancy had higher academic scores than children who were breastfed for less than 6 months (Oddy et al, 2010)
These are but few statistics, but the reverberation of their echoing implications speak louder than words can convey.

Region 10 Interactive Map

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Map of Region 10 Camiguin Misamis Oriental Misamis Occidental Lanao del Norte Bukidnon

Link to Partner Agencies

Partner Agencies NSO Central Office National Bureau of Invistigation Philippine National Police 10 Department of Interior and Local Government National Economic and Development AuthorityBureau of Agriculture Statistics DepEd Professional Regulatory Board Civil Service Commission Department of Foreign AffairsNational Statistics Coordination Board

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