DOH-CAR conducts sustainable sanitation summit
by Vency D. Bulayungan
Banaue, Ifugao (30 November) -- In support to the efforts of the national government to meet one of the Millennium Development Goals, (MDG) 7 on Environmental Stability by 2015, the Department of Health-Center for Health Development in the Cordillera Region (CHD-CAR) conducted a regional sustainable sanitation summit on November 23-24 at the Banaue Hotel here.
The first of its kind in the region, DOH Regional Director Myrna Cabotaje said that the activity seeks to impart sanitation laws to health personnel and other stakeholders in the region who are advocating for environmental sanitation.
It also aims to raise the level of awareness and will be able to advocate a legislative measure on sustainable sanitation among decision makers at the local level.
With the theme making sustainable sanitation a priority at the local level, Ifugao Governor Eugene Balitang said that the activity is timely with the problems on sanitation being experienced.
In Ifugao alone, problems on waste management in the bigger municipalities here like Lagawe, Banaue, Kiangan, Lamut and Alfonso Lista can be felt since these are urban areas in the province, Balitang said.
"There is a direct relationship between health, environment and sanitation.. A dirty environment will lead in the occurrence of various diseases in the community, he said.
While the status of environmental sanitation programs and projects were discussed, action steps to mitigate the effects of climate change on various disciplines were also taken up in said summit," Cabotaje said.
On the otherhand, Regional Director Clarence Baguilat of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) said that everybody has a responsibility to keep the environment clean. It always starts in the individual, he pointed out.
"Nobody can help us clean our surroundings, if not us because we know what to do," Baguilat said as he challenged the participants to spread whatever learnings they acquired in this activity.
Sustainable Sanitation is the process of empowering families and communities to partner with local governments and other stakeholders to address sanitation issues and problems. Participants in this summit came from concerned agencies all over the region. (PIA-Ifugao) [top]