10 Samar towns figured
in the top twenty nutritionally depressed municipalities in Region 08
By NINFA B. QUIRANTE (PIA
August 23, 2008
CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar
– Ten Samar towns figured prominently in the top twenty nutritionally
depressed municipalities in Region 08.
In the Advocacy and
Consultation Meeting on the Accelerated Hunger Mitigation Program (AHMP)
the data was revealed as shown by Operation Timbang data.
In the order of their
appearance in the top twenty table, the list placed Jiabong, Samar in
number two; San Jose de Buan in number 5; Motiong in number 7; and
Tarangnan in number 9.
Gandara followed as
number 13; Basey in number 15; and San Jorge and Tagapul-an in number
19 and 20 respectively.
Mayors Wilfredo Estorninos of Basey and Nancy Grey of San Jorge were
present during the meeting of the mayors whose LGUs were listed in the
A municipality is
nutritionally depressed when it has the highest number of malnourished
children as compared to others.
Other mayors who came
were San Sebastian Mayor Arnold Abalos, Mayor Cornelio Bersales of
Talalora, Mayor Lisandro Kim Adolfo of Sta. Rita and Mayor Edwin
Figueroa of Zumarraga.
Bersales was all smiles as he saw that his town of Talalora has only
some 15% of children who are underweight. Talalora is followed by
Calbiga with only some 17.4 %.
LCEs were also told
that the Municipal Nutrition Committees (MNCs) are non-functional with
the exception of Catbalogan, Hinabangan, Motiong, Sta Margarita and
Calbayog City. Mayor Abalos of San Sebastian though refuted the record
saying they even had a grandiose Nutrition Month celebration in July
Council (NNC) Regional Director Carina Santiago was saddened that only
a handful of LCEs came, she however praised those who cared to come to
discover how their constituents stand as regards nutrition.
Aside from advocating
for a strengthened nutrition program to rehabilitate malnourished
children, Santiago also urged the LCEs to support their nutrition
workers in a series of seminars and training that will be conducted
later this year.
NNC said the training
aims to recognize the LGU as primary implementor and as such should
increase number of community-based workers, improve their capacities,
equip them with logistics and support them with mentoring supervision.
Samar is considered a
Priority Two province in the AHMP Priority Area as based on surveys
conducted by NSO.
Macapagal Arroyo mandated Executive Order 616, creating the
Anti-Hunger Task Force composed of national government agencies to
implement the component programs of AHMP.
Regional Task Force has started implementing the component programs of
the AHMP, it has failed to correlate how the accomplishments
translated to a better nutritional status for Samar children.
Bontoc ALS program is
regional entry for National Literacy Awards
By BONG PEDALINO (PIA Southern
August 23, 2008
BONTOC, Southern Leyte
– This municipality received Wednesday night at the Department of
Education (DepEd) Regional Office in Tacloban City its award for being
the regional winner in the category of local government units (LGUs)
that have functional and existing Alternative Learning System (ALS)
In a long-distance
interview Wednesday shortly before he left for Tacloban, Bontoc Mayor
Pedro Fustanes said that his town is the regional entry for the
national level competition.
The awarding ceremony
on Wednesday night, it was learned, was part of the activities marking
the 33rd anniversary of the DepEd regional office, where the guest
speaker was DepEd Secretary Jesli Lapus.
Mayor Fustanes said he
learned that the province and the city LGUs would also get their
corresponding awards in the same awarding ceremony but he did not know
He revealed some
salient highlights on why the municipal ALS program got the grade of
99% in the regional evaluation, saying that over the past five years
the municipality had set aside an annual budget of over P200,000.
Part of the funds was
used for the pay of trainers who would conduct livelihood skills
training to organized women’s groups in the barangays for the purpose
of augmenting the family income.
The same source of
fund was used for Gender and Development (GAD) activities of the local
Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) office, the same
agency that handles the livelihood component of the ALS program.
A number of women have
already learned skills in cooking and sewing and some of them had been
employed outside the country already following the conduct of the
trainings which were sanctioned by the Technical Education Skills and
Development Authority (TESDA), Mayor Fustanes said.
The ALS skills
trainings were purely an LGU initiative, aside from the regular TESDA-supported
trainings on the Galing Masahista Ako and the Galing Mekaniko Ako, he
In the past five
years that the ALS program has been underway, this was the first time
it became an entry in the national awards, and the Mayor expressed
high hopes it can hit its mark there at the national level during the
awarding rites scheduled in September.
Leyte dads create
council to protect Leyteño OFWs
By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte
– In an unprecedented move to protect the welfare of Leyteño
Overseas Workers, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) of
Leyte approved in the third and final reading the Ordinance
Creating a Provincial Council for the Protection and Welfare of
Leyteño Overseas Filipino Workers (LOFWs), on Tuesday, August 19.
Board Member Carlo Loreto
Leyte Senior Board
Member Carlo Loreto, the principal author of the ordinance, said that
currently, tens of thousands of Leyteños are employed and working in
various companies and establishments in the United States, Canada,
South Korea, Middle East, Australia, and other countries. Many of
them, however, are undocumented and will therefore, have to be
profiled and assisted in every possible way for their own protection.
Loreto said the
ordinance would be an instrument in effectively protecting the rights
and promoting the welfare of LOFWs.
He added that with the
help of Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) and other
partners, the Provincial Council created by the ordinance will cater
to the needs of OFWs and their dependents.
“I had in mind
parallel efforts with that of OWWA from our part at the provincial
government to be undertaken, among other functions, by the Provincial
Council for LOFWs Welfare. In the same way that the NBI and the PNP
have parallel efforts to combat crime, we'll have a provincial council
doing its mandated tasks which may effectively complement efforts of
the OWWA and other national agencies,” Loreto stressed.
importance of the said ordinance to the welfare of LOFWs and their
dependents, we are glad that this has finally been approved with
finality,” said Loreto, who has also authored several other landmark
ordinances, among them: Anti-Illegal Logging and Timber Poaching
Ordinance and the Gender and Development Code of Leyte.
The LOFW Ordinance
creates a Provincial Council for the Protection and Welfare of LOFWs
with specified functions and responsibilities. The Provincial Council
created by this ordinance would be tasked, among others, to provide
trainings on financial management and entrepreneurship for LOFWs and
Board Member Loreto’s
idea is that LOFWs should be afforded every opportunity to develop
meaningful opportunities back home for their immediate families,
relatives, neighbors, and even barangays, by creating business
enterprises which may start small but eventually blossom and provide
employment opportunities for a great many people.
The approved ordinance
also provides that the Council would be composed of the Provincial
Governor of Leyte (chairman); OWWA Regional Director and SP chairman
of the Committee on Women, Children, and Family Welfare (vice
The members of the
Council are the following: Provincial DSWD Director-Leyte, Provincial
National Movement of Young Legislators (NMYL) president; Philippine
Councilors League-Leyte Chapter president; provincial legal officer,
and Philippine National Police (PNP) provincial director;
Other members are the
Provincial Mayor’s League president; Provincial SK Federation
President; Provincial ABC Federation president; provincial planning
and development officer; and two members from the private sector to be
appointed by the governor and confirmed by the provincial board.
Basey aims to beat own record for the
longest mat (banig) woven
By NINFA B. QUIRANTE (PIA
August 21, 2008
CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar
– The Local Government Unit (LGU) of Basey, (Samar) aims to beat its
own record of stretching a 2.0 kilometer woven mat for Guinness Book
of World Records during their town fiesta on September 28, 2008.
Mayor Didi Estorninos
This was bared by
Mayor Wilfredo ‘Didi’ Estorninos in a talk with PIA,
Samar on Tuesday.
Estorninos said that
the last mat laid on display was in the year 2000 when hundred of
community folks paraded a one-meter wide mat, claimed now as the world’s longest mat.
The event was covered
by giant network ABS-CBN along with Kabayan and incumbent Vice
President Noli de Castro who was then an anchor of Magandang Gabi
Weaving mats is Basey’s
prime industry, and has always been a top seller on trade fairs
organized by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) be they held
in SM Megamall or in Cebu and anywhere else in the country.
Basey aims to
highlight the municipality’s
One-town-one-product (OTOP) mat weaving that gives livelihood to the
At the Adona’s
(known producer of mats) where mat displays adorn their home, mat
weavers claim their mat throw pillows are used by Pinoy Big Brother.
Aside from trying to
covet and set a new world record, Basey will also hold a float
competition in a grand parade to feature floats with intricately
designed mats from sedge grass locally known as tikog (Fimbristylis
On August 11, 2008,
during the Samar Day celebration, Basey LGU garnered first prize in
the float competition made of colorful mats besting Hinabangan and
Basey Fiesta will also
feature a kuracha dance competition in groups, Mayor Estorninos added.
In addition the
Sohoton-Bankathon Challenge will also be held where contestants in two
will row their boats as in a relay race to terminate in Sito Rawis,
Barangay Guirang. This is a total of ten kilometers, Mayor Didi bared.
Basey will be
celebrating its 106th fiesta in honor of patron Saint Michael the
Archangel come September 29. (with report from Ricky Bautista)
Some 1,184 indigents
receive medical, dental services in People’s Day of Catarman
By NENE A. MANZANARES (PIA Northern
August 19, 2008
Samar – They called it convergence. Observers said it was public
service. Program “think tanks” dubbed it as “People’s Day of Catarman”.
LtGen. Ike Inserto
But whatever title it
carried, the recently conducted two day medical and dental services at
Barangay Baybay in Catarman was a product of dedicated service as the
Central Command of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, the 803rd
Infantry Brigade, Philippine Army and the Philippine Charity
Sweepstakes in coordination with the provincial government and the
municipality of Catarman joined hands to serve the needy of the four
barangays of Airport Village, Talisay, Abad Santos and Baybay.
According to Lt. Col.
Ernesto M. Simon of the 803rd Brigade, there were 932 patients who got
medical attention, while 252 beneficiaries got dental services. In his
report, Simon said that while the actual conduct of the medical and
dental services were done in Barangay Baybay, the recipients of the
program came from the nearby three other barangays.
Lt. General Pedro Ike
I. Inserto was guest of honor and speaker during the opening ceremony
which was attended by Vice-Governor Antonio P. Lucero, Catarman Mayor
Alita E. Rosales and Col. Eduardo D. Del Rosario, commanding officer
of the 803rd Infantry Brigade. It was likewise attended by Brgy.
chair Mila Edria of Brgy. Baybay, Brgy. Chair Yolanda Talavera of Brgy.
Airport Village, Brgy. chair Pilar Adriasola of Brgy. Talisay and Brgy.
chair Luiz Marino of Brgy. Abad Santos. Baranagy health workers and
school teachers of Brgy. Baybay Elementary School supported the noble
undertaking by witnessing the opening program and by suspending their
school classes to make way for the conduct of the two day “People’s
Day of Catarman”.
In his message, Lt.
General Inserto who initiated the activity acknowledged the role of
PCSO-Cebu regional director William Medici, a kindhearted Catarmananon
who made possible the release of P75,000 for the purchase of
The “People’s Day of
Catarman” has been conceptualized by Inserto who integrated this in
one of the flagship programs of the Central Command of the Armed
Forces of the Philippines.
Simon also reported
that during the closing ceremonies, both the military led by Lt. Col.
Lucino E. Astrero, brigade executive officer who represented the 803rd
brigade commander and the barangay captains of the four barangays
expressed their gratitude for the cooperation extended by both the
military and civilian groups. Active support was provided by the
Barangay officials, barangay health workers and the barangay tanods.
Special thanks were
extended to the medcap volunteers from the Provincial Health Office
headed by Dr. Alejandro Lucban and the Municipal Health Office led by
Dr. Myrna Trongcoso.
PNP Catbalogan readies
to transfer to new building
By NINFA B. QUIRANTE (PIA
August 19, 2008
CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar
– Very soon, the Philippine National Police (PNP) Catbalogan City
Police Station would be transferring to a brand new building worth
all new P4.5M Catbalogan City police station building.
In a PIA interview
with Catbalogan City police Chief Ramil Ramirez Monday, the officer
said that the building lacks the accordion door and it is only what is
needed for them to transfer.
Ramirez said they hope
to transfer this last week of August when the accordion door is
The PNP temporarily
occupied some market stalls at the Catbalogan City Public Market as
the new building was undergoing construction in the so called
‘Barracks” area of the city.
With the coming fiesta
on August 24, PNP is confident that it would be able to handle
security as it is now a 100-pax strong force, Ramirez added.
PNP financed the
construction but Ramirez was quick to underscore the City LGU’s
contribution of more or less P200,000 for furniture, fixtures and the
panaflex signboard the building has.
To this, he graciously
thanked City mayor Coefredo Uy who has supported his unit in providing
patrol cars for the city police force.
Meanwhile in the
PNP General Headquarters in Camp Crame, 359 modern vehicles were
inaugurated to be deployed to the field units all over the country,
the procurement of the vehicles is said to be part of the P10B
Modernization fund promised by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
Sen. Estrada gives P5M
to Leyte hospital improvement
Media Relations Center (PMRC Leyte)
August 19, 2008
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte
– In his recent visit to Tanauan, Leyte to witness the town’s Pasaka
Festival, Senator Jinggoy Estrada has assured a financial support in
the amount of P5 million to be given to Leyte province for the latter
to build another hospital facility or improve its existing one.
The P5 million would
be coming from Sen. Estrada’s Countrywide Development Fund (CDF).
It was learned the
senator himself asked his Ateneo high-school classmate now Leyte
Governor Carlos Jericho Petilla on what project he may be able to
contribute to the province.
Gov. Petilla readily
cited the province presently needs more health facilities to
accommodate local patients.
Thus the P5 million
promised amount is eyed to be used to fund a new Out Patient
Department Building at the Leyte Provincial Hospital (LPH) at the
The LPH is being run by the provincial government of
The new building, if
finally would push through, is being aimed to decongest patients at
the Leyte Provincial Hospital, particularly those that concerns
out-patients or just simple physical check-ups.
According to Gov.
Petilla, donations or help such as this is always a welcome respite
for the hospitals under the province which is currently managing to
stand on its own whose operational expenses are being covered by
one-third of the province’s whole annual budget.
The Leyte Provincial
Hospital is a secondary level medical hospital that caters to the
patients and medical needs of the people from Tacloban, Palo and
nearby municipalities of the province.
It is a public
hospital among several other district hospitals under the provincial
government of Leyte.
12th Samar Day
conjures political figures, the religious, men in uniform and ordinary
By NINFA B. QUIRANTE (PIA
August 15, 2008
CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar
– In the tradition of Samar Day commemoration, Governor Milagrosa Tan
was able to gather political figures, LCEs, the religious and ordinary
Samarnons in a day of celebrating the 12th Samar Day event.
commemoration was highlighted with the flag raising ceremony led
by Samar Governor Milagrosa Tan, Vice-governor Jesus Redaja and
Congresswoman Sharee Ann Tan.
The day, August 11,
2008, started with a mass concelebrated by five priests from the two
parishes in Catbalogan City.
It was followed by a
flag-raising ceremony attended by Gov. Tan, Rep Sharee Ann Tan, Vice
Governor Jesus Redaja and at least 80% of the Board Members from the
first ad second districts.
The Samar mayors that
included Calbayog City Mayor Mel Senen Sarmiento, himself a birthday
celebrator met their fellow LCEs at the WESAMAR building where the
provincial government hosted a sumptuous luncheon.
Barangay folks too
swarmed the capitol for a taste of a grand raffle draw where cash as
high as twenty thousand pesos and goodies from rice to grocery items
abound. A sofa set, mountain bikes and electric fans also were for
Rep. Sharee Ann Tan
distributed scholarship and livelihood skills training certificates to
some 400 beneficiaries as in make up and hair styling, manicure and
pedicure, fish and meat processing, motorcycle repair, health massage
therapy and Auto Computer Assisted Drawing and Design (Auto-CAD).
She also gave out
certificates for some 25 Botika ng Barangay (BnB) operators whose
training she sponsored. With Department of Health (DOH) Regional
Director Teogenes Baluma, she also distributed boxes of medicines
worth P25,000 each for sale to barangay folks.
A week earlier,
nightly concerts, medical-dental missions, cataract operations,
supplemental feeding and Gov Tan’s unstoppable rice giving has stirred
this capital town into a frenzy of activities.
On August 11, the
grand parade and float competition drew out a mammoth crowd which
stayed on despite the power outage and the heavy rains that prevailed
in the afternoon.
Winners to the Mutya
han Samar quest paraded in grandeur in the major thoroughfares of the
city of the Samar capital.
Although, the elder
Tan was unable to deliver her Samar Day message, Rep. Tan summarized
her mom’s sentiments which said that her mom is very happy that this
12th Samar has brought all the forces of Samar together to mark a
historic event and conjure plan out for the development of the
Provincial chief taps
DepEd to boost food production
By BRYAN M. AZURA
BORONGAN CITY, Eastern
Samar – Gov. Ben P. Evardone, seeing the potential of the workforce
of the public schools in the province, forged a partnership with the
Department of Education Eastern Samar Division through Gulayan sa
Paaralan program to further boost food production in the province in a
meeting with division officials and district heads at the Capitol
Conference Hall, this city.
Gov. Ben Evardone
The program, initiated
to let the schools come up with vegetable gardens through the students
and even parents and guardians, is a brainchild of DepEd and is being
adopted by the province to sustain the program.
“We want to inculcate
the value of food production not only to the students and employees
but more importantly and generally to every ordinary
Eastern Samareño,” Evardone addressed the more than 60 education
officials from all over the province.
“We are facing a
problem on food,” Evardone continued. The governor said that supply is
decreasing but the demand (on food) is increasing.
In the latest census
of the National Statistics Office (NSO), population in Eastern Samar
has skyrocketed to more than 420,000 from 375,000 in 2001 NSO report.
“That increase of population is a substantial number of mouths to feed
already,” the provincial chief added, “and if we will not do something
about it, then we are in for greater problems.”
“That is why we have
come out with initiatives on food production,” Evardone said. The
governor is thankful the DepEd is supportive to the said program.
province will be providing the planting materials which include
seedlings, fertilizers and other planting equipment necessary to start
gardens inside the school premises. The Office of the Provincial
Agricultural Services (OPAS) will be closely involved in the
implementation of the program.
Jesus Agda, the
provincial agriculturist, advised the school heads to plant
nutritional vegetables and not the easy to plant ones but not
at Pangkabuhayan (EPP) teachers who were present in the meeting said
they are thankful the province is providing them with necessary
materials as they are basically having a hard time producing
vegetables and fruit-bearing plants in their schools.
meanwhile said to the participants that he personally is bent on
sustaining the program. “This is not just a one-time program and will
stop after sometime but we will sustain this,” he said.
education people are asked to provide the province some important data
such as the number of hectares available for project’s use, materials
and the kind of seed or plant that will be planted in their respective
“As much as possible,
we want to procure all the necessary materials the soonest possible
time so we can plant before the month of September ends or before the
rainy season begins,” Evardone said.
Senator Pia Cayetano
opens RP's first human milk bank in Makati
By Office of Senator Pia Cayetano
August 15, 2008
Philippines – Senator Pia S. Cayetano led the launching of the
country's very first community milk bank in Makati City Thursday as
part of efforts to raise public awareness to revive the dying practice
Pia Cayetano and volunteers help 26-year-old Maricris Capote
express milk using a manual breast pump at the launching of a
community milk bank in Makati City.
Some 200 mothers all
over Makati showed up at the Guadalupe Nuevo Barangay Hall to donate
at least five ounces of breastmilk.
The community milk
bank is a project of the Compañero Rene Cayetano Foundation, named
after Senator Pia's late father, in coordination with the Makati City
health department and Makati Representative Abigail Binay.
Medela, a supplier of
post-natal care equipment, donated 10 manual breast pumps for the
activity worth P1,800 each.
The launching was
timed with "World Breastfeeding Month" which is celebrated in August.
Maricris Capote, a
26-year-old mother from Barangay Pembo, stood out among the
mother-donors who lined up to express milk using a manual breast pump
for at least 15 minutes.
Capote, who came with
her eight-month-old son Iazethn and mother Virgie, stands barely three
Cayetano took notice
of her and even assisted Capote in expressing her milk.
"The idea [of this
project] is to tell moms who are breastfeeding to take it a step
forward, to help other moms who cannot immediately breastfeed,"
Cayetano, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health and
Demography, told reporters in an interview.
The milk collected
from each mother was stored in a sterilized container, transferred to
a cooler and sent to the Dr. Jose Fabella Memorial Hospital in Sta.
The hospital maintains
a milk bank which has a pasteurizing equipment and three freezers that
can preserve the milk for up to six months. The milk will be given to
newborn babies who are too weak to suck due to prematurity or
congenital diseases, as well as babies whose mothers could not
immediately breastfeed because of complications such as hypertension
The setting up of
human milk banks in hospitals providing maternity services is one of
the highlights of Cayetano's Senate Bill 1698, also known as the
"Expanded Breastfeeding Act," which has passed third reading in the
The bill also
encourages the establishment of lactation stations in public places
and private and government offices to allow mothers to continue
breastfeeding once they return to work after giving birth.