The Department of Health (DOH) and National Nutrition Council (NNC) recently led the commissioning of the Central Luzon Regional Nutrition Shepherding Team (RNST) for the nutrition program management in the region.
Initially composed of 24 members, RNST primarily aims to provide technical assistance to local government units (LGUs) in order to mobilize them towards effective nutrition program management, according to a Philippine Information Agency report.
NNC Regional Nutrition Program Coordinator Ana Maria Rosaldo said the Regional Nutrition Committee approved through Resolution 1, Series of 2022 the adoption of the Implementing Guidelines on Nutrition Shepherding Project for Effective Nutrition Program Management in the region.
The core team will shepherd priority LGUs on effective nutrition program management focusing on nutrition policies, nutrition planning and budgeting, and local nutrition structures and human resources.
“We have been extending assistance to our LGUs for a long time especially when we are conducting the Monitoring and Evaluation of Local Level Plan Implementation (MELLPI). However, this is not structured,” Rosaldo was quoted as saying.
“It is only on an on-call basis and based only on what we saw as a result of the MELLPI. With this RNST, our technical assistance is now more structured so we can focus on the LGUs until they become self-propelling, their local nutrition committees are functional, and they can also shepherd other LGUs,” she said.
“They can also adopt the strategies used by the RNST in their component cities and municipalities,” Rosaldo said.
As part of their duties, RNST members will review the nutrition situation of priority LGUs and determine gaps in nutrition program implementation and management; as well as assist in identifying solutions to address identified gaps.