Davao City to be a model in Asia: Unicef

May. 19, 2008

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) envisions Davao City as a model in Asian region for the ‘salt iodization project’.

UNICEF representative Liza Saldanha told the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) in an interview that Kiwanis Club of Davao City in coordination with UNICEF has made Davao City its major beneficiary and has committed to distributing about 8,000 packs (1/4 kilo per pack) of iodized salt for would-be mothers of Davao.

From all over the world, only Davao has been given this opportunity because the city has set the standard in the implementation of government’s salt iodization law.

Spearheaded by mayor Rodrigo R. Duterte, the City was the first local government unit (LGU) to successfully enforce the salt iodization law requiring all salt meant for human and animal consumption entering the Port of Davao to be iodized.

Thousands of packs of iodized salt was initially turned over last week in a ceremony led by Saldanha and by Boy Rallos and Eleonor Madiclum of the Kiwanis Club of Davao City. The salt was received by Dr. Josephine Villafuerte of the chity health office, city nutrition chief Venus Millana and Dr. Margaret Sabay from the Department of Health.

Pre-pregnancy packages composed of iodized salt and other vitamins will be distributed to all districts of Davao City. In turn, these packages will be distributed for free to would be couples and those attending family planning seminars, which is required of couples before they get married.

Kiwanis said their organization has been supporting Duterte’s effort in the promotion of proper nutrition, in addressing malnutrition in the city and the full implementation of the law on food fortification. The mayor earlier designated a member of the Kiwanis Club to be his co-chair in the Task Force on Food Fortification which he created under Executive Order 19 in November 7, 2007. (PIA)

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