Knowledge is the gateway to improving practices; one cannot put into practice something that he does not know. Going with this logic, team NB has been persistent in its educational campaign in improving the health of its community. Among its educational campaign is that of improving the rate of quality prenatal visits of the pregnant women in the community as well as promoting good health among this population through better knowledge and practices on family planning. In line with this, the group has come up with a lecture and open forum session with the women of reproductive age in the community. This session has since been called the “Mothers’ class”, an educational gathering of mothers and future mothers of the community. This mothers’ class has become almost a regular activity of the group during their community immersions.
This time is no exception, another mothers’ class was held inviting all women of reproductive age in the community. It focuses on the monthly schedule of the local Rural Health Unit in coming to the community to offer prenatal services, the services to be expected at each semester of the pregnancy, the benefits of these services to the mother and her child, the common complications and danger signs of pregnancy, and the types of family planning method available.
When a woman becomes a mother, it awakens a sense of maturity and responsibility. She may feel the need to learn more to protect herself and her child. The mothers’ class meets these needs by making the necessary information accessible to them and when it comes to disseminating knowledge, good communication is the key. This brings the community and the medical students together, forming a support group where they can also learn from each other and encourage one another. This also develops trust and a sense of responsibility in both parties.
Fatimah Efthihar Karanain
A year ago, the last time we were in the community of New Barili, Tampilisan, Zamboanga del Norte, several steps were undertaken to achieve the goal of building a healthier community with our NO BOUNDARIES 4 HEALTH PLAN specifically in decreasing the rate of malnutrition in barangay New Barili, Tampilisan. There were lots of hesitations at first as to whether these projects, including monthly weighing “Oplan Magtinimbangay ta!”, 120-day feeding, garantisadong pambata campaign, series of mothers class, dental and hygienic campaign, cooking class and Utan na loob cooking contest, will be maintained, optimized, and further developed. But we kept our hopes up and trusted on the will and determination of the community residents to create a better place for them and their future generations.
A year later, after spending six to seven rigorous months in the hospital for clerkship and mind breaking formulation of our research protocols, we finally went back to New Barili for a 10-month Community Medicine Exposure with hopes still high that the community residents and core of TEAM NB continued what we've started - and lo, they did.
The nutrition health program has always been one of the strength of No Boundaries 4 health plan. The problem about malnutrition was a major concern when we were last here but upon our recent visit to the Municipal Nutrition Coordinator (MNC) and Barangay Nutrition Scholar (BNS) we have noted a significant reduction in its prevalence when we got back. From roughly 20% for the year 2014, 15% for 2015, and now with a 10.09% for the year 2016 - New Barili now ranks number 14th out of the 20 barangay of Tampilisan. We are looking forward for what’s in store for the remaining months of 2017 up till 2018. We are positive that we can reach team NB’s goal of a malnutrition rate of less than 10% for the year 2018.
Indeed, building a self-sustaining community is the backbone of the community medicine exposures of ADZU SOM Medical Students. This is basically helping people help themselves, maximizing available resources and optimizing their potentials.
Geode Allan Diansuy
ADZU SOM Level 4
As our 6th community exposure comes to a close and the next lays on the horizon full of exciting possibilities, it’s a good time to reflect our accomplishments and how we kept the spirit high to fight diseases and stay on top of our game for the love of the people and the field of medicine.
After our awareness campaigns and lectures, information dissemination, planning and brain storming on how to come up with programs specifically on promoting exercise to prevent and control hypertension, finally we were able to come-up with Zumba dance exercise with easy to learn steps to accommodate all ages who will join the weekly exercise.
When we initiated the program last November 2016, it seems a breeze to get the community people through the door and how to keep them and encourage them to come back for our weekly session to promote lifestyle modification to fight hypertension.
We were blessed to be assigned in a community with active and supportive Barangay Officials, they helped us promote and disseminate our program to encourage everyone to attend. The first Zumba session was a success. Children, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, granny and grandpa’s were present. Thanks to the ever active, participative community people. We are such a lucky group.
This exposure, unlike the previous one, we made a little twist. Since it was a season of celebration—the barangay fiesta and the “Araw ng New Barili”, we tapped the Senior citizen club and the youth to come up with their group to participate in the “ZUMBA CONTEST: Senior Citizen and Regular Edition” which they accepted with enthusiasm. In this way, we are hitting a lot of birds in one shot. Promoting exercise and bring joy to the community. “HAPPY NA, IWAS HIGH BLOOD PA!”.
Adzu-SOM Level 4
Least that we expect, the “Lolas and Lolos” were the ones very excited to participate in our Zumba program. We offered them that we can help them in their practices and they proposed that we practice every day in the afternoon so that they will memorize their steps during the final performance.
The group was divided into 2. Group 1 named their group as “The TIGUWANGGETS” meaning “TIGULANG na BAGETS” while the other group are the “SEXY SENIORS” because it was an all-girl group. We practiced every day, like literally every single day. I don’t know where they get their enthusiasm and willingness to practice but it was fun. They never run out of energy to dance and show that age doesn’t stop them from enjoying and dancing.
Then came the final day, September 23, 2017. Everybody was busy preparing their costumes. I can see the excitement on their faces the happiness in their smiles. They dance their heart out to the beat of “Sabay- sabay tayo” and “Mambo No. 5” during the final performance, they were enjoying, having fun and of course very competitive which made the crowd laugh and giggle with their performance. It was an AWESOME experience working with the senior citizens. Until next time! Ciao!
Adzu-SOM Level 4
Women who suspect they may be pregnant should schedule a visit to their health care provider to begin prenatal care. The importance of a quality prenatal care, consisting of at least 4 prenatal visits, has been emphasized in the community repeatedly over the course of the immersion of the medical students.
In coordination with the Rural Health Unit of the Municipality of Tampilisan, Zamboanga del Norte, a monthly prenatal service is being extended to the community every third Thursday of the month. One health care provider from the RHU visits the Barangay Health Station where prenatal consultation is held. Services offered includes, but not limited to, Tetanus Toxoid immunization, weighing, and distribution of supplements.
From 41% to 100% rate of quality prenatal care in the community over the span of almost three years, a great improvement in the number of pregnant women visiting for prenatal service can be observed. This can only be achieved through the synergetic effect of fervent information dissemination and the great efforts of the RHU.
Today, the importance of maternal health has become more recognized both by the government and its people thus the allocation of more attention to the matter. Mothers are the nurturers of the community therefore ensuring their health is also ensuring the health of the community.
Fatimah Efthihar Karanain
The day cheerfully started with the 8 members of the group hanging colorful hand-made buntings on the covered-court where the cooking show was to be held.
7 tables for each purok representatives- ready.
Big tables for the judges-ready.
We invited three guests to judge our contest: Mr. Ervin Bato, Ms. Rowena Garsula and Ms. Mari Cris Lagare.
Mothers love to cook. But we aim for quality healthy meals to be served in dinner tables all across New Barili. A reduced in quality meal are results of numerous factors including scarce resources, competing time demands, busy schedules, daily stressors, lack of cooking knowledge and confidence and an increased reliance on "usual" foods.
There are many factors that influence whether families will cook and eat healthy meals. One of the most important is knowledge. We want to show them that they can prepare quality healthy meals with the vegetables they have in their own backyards. The perceived cost of healthy food can be a barrier to a healthy diet.
The hosts laid out the main criteria: Pallatability, nutritive value, availability and accessibility of ingredients and presentation.
Contestants were given 2 hours to cut, cook and serve. It was a battlef straight out of a MasterChef show. Each purok had 3 cooks to represent them. Each team with their own character and finesse. But thy share one thing, all were driven to win. Cooks shouting, instructing and running! Let me tell you, it was a fine frenzy. All this In the smoky battlefield of firewood cooking!
Two hours past and their dishes did not disappoint. Plated with sass and jazz.
The judges hopped from table to table while the 8 vulture medical students followed behind to eat the post-judged meals. Every table needed to have go, grow and glow food prepared. And all did. Each table more surprising than the next, it was a feast! The most notable innovations seen were ginataang monggo, the use of gabi stalks to make fried balls and kilaw and fish curry. Yum yum in the tum.
Purok 4 claimed victory with their winning kilawing gabi! Innovative, delicious, nutritious and cheap! Cash prizes were handed out, sponsored by the local government unit. Mothers all around realized it can be easy to prepare quality healthy meals by just paying visit to their backyard garden. All they need is trust and pixie dust (I mean creativity). Everyone won that day. Especially the children and their future incredible meals!
-Princess Shelmerry Dawn Que
Adzu-SOM Level 4
“If we could give every individual the right amount of nourishment and exercise, not too little and not too much, we would have found the safest way to health.” ~ Hippocrate
One of the best way to health is physical fitness, physical activities can be fun and one of those fun things is sports. Filipinos loves basketball, some even say that basketball is live.
Basketball is part of the Filipinos Culture, everywhere you go, and you can see basketball courts all around the country. And basketball tournaments are common everywhere, especially when barangay fiestas are near.
This month the barangay coordinated a series of activities as part of the upcoming barangay fiesta. One of those activities is the Inter Purok Basketball Competition, wherein it was divided among youth and the not so youth participants. Taking advantage of this, we conducted a short lecture on sports and its effect on health, especially hypertension. In the end everything was fun! Congrats to the winners and everyone who participated!
One of our community health plan targets malnutrition. Key to happy healthy bodies: healthy eating! And who else feeds the tummies of the next generation? Our dearest mothers.
We incorporated a cooking show to the Mother's class. Community-based interventions aiming to improve cooking skills are a popular strategy to promote healthy eating. No mother has welcomed malnutrition to her household. But reality is never ideal. New Barili, though rich in heart, is not rich in financial resources. And this is the common "excuse" on interviews. Low education attainment, low income and high socioeconomic deprivation are main factors associated with poor diet. Nutrition literacy and lack of practical cooking skills in economically deprived households are important matters in battling malnutrition.
So let's Go Grow Glow!
Increasing fruit and vegetable consumption is a key strategy to improve diet, yet intakes remain significantly below recommended levels, especially across socially disadvantaged groups who constitute a majority of the targeted populations for cookery initiatives. The UTAN NA LOOB cooking class aims to expose participants to new foods, as a means to increase variety and facilitate adherence to current dietary guidelines for fruit and vegetable consumption. With that in mind, our group came up with Fish-Veggie Balls. It's a combination of pumpkin, mung beads, shredded fish meat, fried to a ball of yummy goodness. It was showcase the possibilities of coming up with healthy meals by using simple ingredients that are available in common households. After cooking up a storm to an audience of almost 80 people, we allowed them to try the finish product. This strategy has shown promising outcomes for social bonding, linkage and encouragement of group discussion, whilst also offering a starting point for the modification of neophobic responses towards disliked, rejected or foods not eaten such as fruit and vegetables. They loved it. The children loved it. The husbands live it. It was a success.
After the cooking show, they were very much inspired to participate in the upcoming UTAN NA LOOB COOKING CONTEST. Our participant registry filled in a matter of seconds! Let's see how it goes!
Princess Shelmerry Dawn Que
Adzu-SOM Level 4
September 2 2017-- a vegetable expo spearheaded by the Department of Agriculture and EastWest Seeds was held in Purok 2, Barangay New Barili, Tampilisan. There were displays of a variety of vegetables ready to harvest—eggplants, string beans, okra and then some. The DA and EastWest Seeds credit the success of the vegetable garden to Larry Lumosad, a farmer from the barangay who was named the best farmer scientist in the entire region. He was the one who managed and raised the farm from the time the seeds were planted up until their harvest time.
The event was full of activities such as lectures, and parlor games. One of the activities was the educational tour. The agricultural specialists took us, along with the farmers, on a tour around the vegetable garden. Step by step process of gardening was discussed. They gave us some advice that would help us in implementing the barangay communal garden. We were also given a chance to talk to Sir Larry Lumosad, and he was very much willing to help.
Before the event ended, the organizers gave us some seeds to help us get a headstart for our communal garden. Some of the seeds were chili, tomato, okra, mung beans, string beans, and many more. Overall, the vegetable expo was a day for our beloved farmers. A celebration of their contribution to the community. We also hope that the things we learned that day will help our dream for a successful communal garden be within our reach.