/ 13 September 2022

SENATOR Imee Marcos urged the government to restore the Nutribun Feeding Program to address undernutrition among children.

“We must restore the Nutribun Feeding Program’s place as a viable solution to undernutrition among children. It can’t remain an intermittent and sporadic advocacy,” Marcos said.

The senator partnered with the National Nutrition Council, which her father established in 1974, various local government units and municipal offices of the Department of Social Welfare and Development and barangay health workers for the program.

Simultaneous pilot-testing of the Nutribun Feeding Program took place on Sunday in Rizal, Cebu and Ilocos Norte, where 1,000 children, aged three to five, received packs of the iconic bread made from squash, malunggay and other high-nutrient crops.

Marcos’ office and all government workers involved will monitor the children’s weight and state of health in the next three months.

The senator’s personal initiative complements the government’s nutrition programs to be bolstered with the $178 million funding from the World Bank to address child stunting.

The World Bank in its 2021 report said that there have been almost no improvements in the prevalence of undernutrition in the Philippines in the past 30 years. The Philippines ranked fifth in the East Asia and Pacific Region with the highest prevalence of stunting and is among the 10 countries in the world with the highest number of stunted children.

“There’s no more time to lose, if the next generations of Filipino children are to be healthy in body and mind, and ultimately productive as grown-up citizens,” Marcos said.