PREGNANT MOTHERS. The municipal government of Arteche in Eastern Samar started to provide services to pregnant mothers of services ensuring that their babies will not only be delivered safe but healthy. (PHOTO COURTESY)

TACLOBAN CITY – The local government unit of Arteche in Eastern Samar has started the roll-out of ‘MaMa or the Masustansyang Pagbubuntis, Masiglang Kamusmusan’ program in partnership with the Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP).

PBSP is the largest business-led non-government organization committed to poverty reduction and sustainable development through relevant and responsive programs on health, education, environment, and livelihood.

MaMa is a project of PBSP and adopted by the municipal government of Arteche under ‘Project S-U-S-A-N-e’ or the Sustainable Nutrition and Nanay Empowerment program that also aims to assist mothers and women of the municipality.

The program focuses on pregnant women where they are given free prenatal tests and vitamin supplements as well as nutrition education sessions to assist them during their pregnancy and to help ensure a healthy first 1,000 days to their children.

At least 35 pregnant women from various villages of Arteche were selected to be part of the program implementation.

“From pregnancy until their children reach two years old, they will be assisted under the program and we will have close monitoring to ensure that they will receive services like antenatal testing, Luto Ni MaMa Nutrition Education Sessions, Complementary Feeding, and Periodic Weigh-Ins among others,” Mayor Roland Boei Evardone said.

Mayor Evardone said that this program will be implemented for three years.

The LGU is also partnering with the PSBP for the implementation of the Lunchbox Library which is also a program of the non-government organization under the NextGen Initiatives focusing on the health and nutrition, and education of the children.

The Lunchbox Library is a 20-week reading and feeding program for school-age children funded by the NGO in partnership with the Department of Education Arteche District and Federation of Parents Teachers Association.

The focus of the program is to assist students who have reading and comprehension problems and incorporate it into a supplementary feeding program providing them with essential nutrients necessary for brain function and mental performance.