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ECCD TWGTUGUEGARAO CITY, Cagayan -- National Nutrition Council Region 02 convened Regional Nutrition Committee (RNC) members in a special RNC meeting for the creation of the Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) in the First 1000 Days Technical Working Group on July 22, 2021, via Zoom Meeting.

Ms. Maria Gisela Lonzaga, Nutrition Program Coordinator, welcomed the RNC members and informed the body that a ECCD technical working group will be organized to monitor the programs, projects and activities in the First 1000 Days being implemented in the region. Also, she said that Tutok Kainan Dietary Supplementation Program for pregnant women in provinces of Isabela and Cagayan already started.

The goal of the ECCD in the First 1000 Days (ECCD-F1K) is to ensure the full development of the child. Specifically, it aims to reduce mortality rates among children 0-23 months old, prevalence of stunting and wasting among children 0-23 months old, increase the percentage of children 0-23 months old meeting developmental milestones, coverage of key services and the percentage of those practicing desirable behavior such as exclusive breastfeeding and complementary feeding. The target beneficiaries include pregnant women, infants 0-11 months and children 12-23 months old, conditional cash transfer program beneficiaries, and others.

NPC Lonzaga emphasized that the First 1000 days is the critical window of opportunity for a child’s growth and development and proper nutrition in this period will have significant impacts on his/her health.

Furthermore, Nutrition Officer III Edzell Arcinue presented the role and functions of the ECCD-F1K Technical Working Group which includes the Department of Health (DOH), Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), National Nutrition Council Secretariat, Department of Budget and Management (DBM), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Science and Technology – Food and Nutrition Research Institute (DOST-FNRI), National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) and Local Government Units (LGUs).

A resolution will finalize the creation and organization of the ECCD-F1K TWG in the region that will coordinate programs, projects, and activities in the First 1000 Days of Life. – Frances Vea T. Valdez