Poe: Continue funding 'First 1,000 Days' nutrition program amid pandemic | Inquirer News

Poe: Continue funding ‘First 1,000 Days’ nutrition program amid pandemic

By: - Reporter / @KHallareINQ
/ 12:37 PM October 06, 2020


Sen. Grace Poe. Screen grab / Senate PRIB file photo

MANILA, Philippines — Senator Grace Poe has called on the government for the continual funding, as well as “heightened action,” for the implementation of the First 1,000 Days Law amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a statement on Tuesday, Poe said that the government must scale up efforts to ensure that no baby and mother would suffer from hunger in the middle of the health crisis.


Under Republic Act 11148 or the Kalusugan at Nutrisyon ng Mag-Nanay Act, it mandates that adequate funding support is needed in addressing malnutrition among pregnant moms and newborn babies in the first 1,000 days.


“Sustained initiatives on nutrition have become more compelling to deny this COVID-19 pandemic a legacy of hunger and malnutrition in babies and mothers,” Poe, who is the co-author and co-sponsor of the measure in the Senate, said.

She added that aside from continual funding amid the pandemic, “heightened action” must be done to continue implementing the law.

“The babies’ first 1,000 are the time to be seized. Quality early care is a fundamental right we must guarantee for the children,” Poe said.

Citing scientific researches, Poe added that the first 1,000 days of a baby is “one of the most vulnerable and critical periods in child development.”

“How well or how poorly babies are fed and reared during this period has a profound impact on their ability to grow, learn and thrive,”

Poe raised her concern as Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, who is the head of the government’s Task Force on Zero Hunger, said that he was worried that stunting and malnutrition among children may get worse due to hunger because of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Aside from this, a recent Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey showed that 7.6 million Filipino families experienced involuntary hunger from July to September of this year. This figure, according to the pollster, is the highest recorded hunger incidence since 2014.

Poe, meanwhile, said that to address this, children should be at the center of the government’s initiatives “to provide access to essential and often life-saving nutrition services.”

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The senator added that as per the 2021 proposed national budget, at least P159 million had been appropriated for the implementation of the law.

TAGS: 000 Days Law, first 1, Grace Poe, Hunger, Malnutrition

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