World Vision’s Mother-Baby Friendly Philippines project kicked off nationwide mall caravan in Trinoma
Leovy Ramirez, Advocacy and Communications Officer
Every mother has the right to breastfeed her child and every child has the right to breastfeeding.
The Mother-Baby Friendly Philippines project made Mother’s Day celebration a lot meaningful as it kicked off the first leg of its nationwide caravan in Trinoma Mall on May12, 2018. Mothers from nearby cities as well as members of various government and non-government organizations graced the event to support the global campaign of protecting, promoting, and supporting breastfeeding.
In a brief lecture, Maria Lourdes Vega of National Nutrition Council reminded each participant about the benefits of breastfeeding both to a mother and a child. Vega reiterated the importance of exclusively breastfeeding a baby within the first six months of life.
Jimbo Vitudio of Department of Health-NCR, on the other hand, discussed the provisions of Executive Order 51 (The Philippine Milk Code of 986), Republic Act 7600 (The Rooming-In and Breastfeeding Act of 1992), and Republic Act 10028 (The Expanded Breastfeeding Promotion Act of 2009) and the common violations to these laws. Vitudio emphasized that awareness to these laws is essential to uphold breastfeeding in the country.
Meanwhile, Carleneth F. San Valentin oriented the participants about the Mother-Baby Friendly Philippines project, its goals, and its partner agencies and organizations. San Valentin also discussed the reporting system that aims to monitor compliance and non-compliance to the abovementioned laws.
One of the program highlights was when two members of the audience shared their breastfeeding journey. One of them recounted that she breastfed her two kids in hopes of making them healthier than she used to be when she was a kid. “I grew up sickly, in and out of the hospital. Kaya sinabi ko na kapag naging nanay ako, magpapabreastfeed ako. Sa awa ng Diyos, hindi sila sakitin. (I promised to breastfeed my child if given the chance. Thank God, my children grew up as healthy kids.) To pay it forward, I became a breastfeeding counselor.”
Sally Ragrag, on the other hand, urged every mother never to get easily persuaded by the promises of formula milk companies. “Sa pangalawang anak ko, mas lalo akong napush magpabreastfeed kase nakita ko ang benefits nito sa panganay ko na never na-ospital. Sa mga nanay, bago kayo magresort sa formula feeding, magkaroon kayo ng sariling pag-aaral. Wag kayong magpatulak sa ibang tao na magformula milk na lang dahil sinasabing mas maganda o mas masustansya to. Pero di ba, mas masustansya pag mas natural at pag gawa ng Diyos. Mas naniniwala ako dun kesa sa kino-commercial ng formula milk. (I became more determined to breastfeed my second child after realizing how breastfeeding benefited my firstborn. To all moms out there, do your own research. Do not be tempted to formula feed your child out of peer pressure. I believe that a God-given gift such as breastmilk is better than any claims of formula milk commercials).”
Tippy Dos Santos, World Vision ambassador, charmed the crowd with her soothing rendition of Miley Cyrus’ “The Climb,” which according to her symbolizes the project team’s arduous yet significant efforts to achieve a healthier Philippines. Aside from the enriching discussions, the participants also enjoyed the game, photo, and platform booths.
The mall caravan aims to widen the reach of MBFP project and to educate more people outside the project’s pilot sites in Manila, Malabon, and Quezon City. The team is set to continue the caravan in Davao and Cebu in June 2018.
World Vision/May 25, 2018
World Vision is a global Christian relief, development and advocacy organisation dedicated to working with children, families and communities to overcome poverty and injustice. World Vision serves all people, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, or gender.