WMSU hosts Breastfeeding Expo 2014 PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 11 August 2014 11:45

“Breastfeeding is nature’s free vaccine… I congratulate WMSU for its involvement in advocating breastfeeding in the community,” stressed Dr. Rodelin M. Agbulos, City Health Officer, as he commended Western Mindanao State University for being the first institution other than the City Health Office to conduct a breastfeeding fair in line with the celebration of the 22nd World Breastfeeding Week.

About 100 pregnant and lactating mothers with their partners from WMSU and the community with their babies and over 700 students, faculty and administrative personnel were welcomed by the university president, Dr. Milabel Enriquez-Ho to the whole day affair. The president further highlighted the importance of breastfeeding in the community.

Breast milk provides the ideal nutrition for infants. It has a perfect mix of vitamins, protein, and fat—everything a baby (0-6 months old) needs to grow.

Dr. Gloria G. Florendo, Director of the Special Programs and Projects Office of WMSU, mentioned in her speech that the National Demographic and Health System statistics show that as of 2009, only 34% of mothers in the Philippines turn to breastfeeding; only 23.7% in the region and therefore, this advocacy of WMSU is geared towards achieving the Millenium Development Goals for 2015. “All of us should become advocates,” Dr. Florendo articulated. The SPPO Director further challenged everyone present during the event to be advocates on breastfeeding and make a breastfeeding score towards a winning goal for life.

In his speech, Dr. Agbulos lauded the University for putting up a Lactation Center, which according to him, is one great move of WMSU in supporting the city government’s health campaign.

The opening program wrapped up with a ribbon-cutting signifying the opening of the breastfeeding exposition where informative booths were put up by different colleges and offices showing off various information materials on the benefits of breastfeeding not only to babies but to lactating mothers as well.

Subsequently, mini-games and forums were conducted in booths by various offices and colleges in the university. Simultaneous activities followed including one of the major highlights of the event dubbed as the “Fab and Glam” day for breastfeeding mothers where they were pampered by their partners through massage—a day of showing their affection for the mother of their children. Mr. Wilfred S. Turco, a massage trainer, taught the partners who were present the techniques on doing massage to stimulate the production of breast milk.

Meanwhile, students from different colleges signed up for the poster-making contest where Xherandie Jay M. Taupan from the College of Home Economics bested twelve other participants including second placer John Vincent Descalzo who is from CHE as well and third placer Ibni Rushdie Tahil from the College of Physical Education, Recreation and Sports. The theme of the contest was “Breastfeeding: Scoring the Winning Goal for Life”

Out of the eight informative breastfeeding booths that were set up at the Covered Court, College of Home Economics emerged as the winner; College of Nursing and the Administrative Personnel Association bagged the second and third spots respectively. The College of Teacher Education, however was recognized as the Most Interactive Booth, while the College of Criminal Justice Education’s booth was awarded the Most Sensitive Breastfeeding Booth which, according to the judges, that although their discipline is not health related their booth still aligned to the subject on breastfeeding.

A talk show on breastfeeding entitled “Kwento de Mama” wrapped up the day’s event where Ms. Amina T. Lim, Nutrition Coordinator of the UNICEF and Dr. Miriam O. Kanti, CN Extension Coordinator, answered some questions on the benefits of breast milk to babies and mothers, how to properly store pumped milk especially to working mothers and some other concerns on breastfeeding. The talk show was hosted by GRRC Director, Prof. Rosalyn R. Echem and College of Communications and Humanities instructor, Prof. Fhadzralyn A. Karanain who is a lactating mother of an eight-month old baby.

The success of the program was accomplished through the collaborative efforts of the Special Programs and Projects Office under Dr. Gloria G. Florendo, the Gender Research and Resource Center under Prof. Rosalyn R. Echem, with support from the College of Home Economics Dean Prof. Lucia M. Santos, College of Nursing’s Extension Coordinator Prof. Miriam O. Kanti, Human Resource Management Officer III Mrs. Ma. Teresita J. Rodriguez and Administrative Personnel Association President Mr. Richard Hamja.

The aforementioned event is but one of the many advocacies of the University that aims to contribute to the region’s socio-economic growth, health and well being with its core public mission: “La universidad para la comunidad.” — Mandy Dalugdug – PAO, WMSU