DOST-NCR Brings Science and Technology Fair to North Caloocan

Following the successful celebration of the 2022 National Science and Technology Week (NSTW), the Department of Science and Technology-National Capital Region brought science to the people, this time to northern Metro Manila through its Regional Science and Technology Week (RSTW) which was held from 1-3 December 2022 at the University of Caloocan-North Congressional Campus, Caloocan City.

Anchored on the theme “Agham at Teknolohiya: Kabalikat sa Maunlad at Matatag na Kinabukasan,” this year’s RSTW had something interesting for everyone: livelihood opportunities, fun inter-active science displays for students, and a mini-tiangge featuring products from assisted companies and organizations from DOST’s programs for MSMEs and urban communities for those doing some early Christmas shopping.

DOST Undersecretary for Regional Operations Engr. Sancho A. Mabborang, Caloocan City Mayor Dale Gonzalo Malapitan, and Caloocan City 1st District Representative Congressman Oscar G. Malapitan graced the event’s Opening Ceremony, which saw representatives from other LGUs, national government agencies, academic institutions, private industry partners, MSMEs, and media guests also in attendance.

One of the highlights of the 2022 RSTW was the recognition of the Regional Awardees of the SETUP PRAISE Awards, ICON Award, i-Ready Award, and the Best CEST Community.

The Manila HealthTek Inc. (MTek), a spin-off company which developed the country’s GenAmplify COVID-19 Test Kit, was recognized as the Region’s Best Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (SETUP) adoptor. The SETUP PRAISE award is given to a micro, small, or medium enterprise (MSME) which demonstrated productivity, resilience, agility, innovativeness, and sustainability amidst the challenges of today. MTek was also conferred the Most Innovative Award during the National SETUP PRAISE Awarding held during the NSTW Celebration.

NISCO Philippines Enterprises, a CAMANAVA-based company, won the Industry 4.0 Champion of Innovation Award or ICON Award. The award entails the adoption of innovations related to Industry 4.0 which creates value to customers and brings productivity and transformation in the process of the enterprise. NISCO, a long-time DOST-NCR client, fabricates machinery for food processing, cosmetics, and pharmaceutical packaging applications. Its products include bottle fillers, pouch machines, candy molders, and other customized machinery.

Another special award is the Most Industry 4.0-Ready Award or the i-Ready Award, which is given to a company which exemplifies readiness and the ability to adopt the Industry 4.0 technologies in its business operations. This year’s i-Ready Award was given to Ideatechs Packaging Corporation since the company was able to produce quality paper-based products using the Paper Bowl Forming Machines and Double Walling Paper Cup Sleeving Machine and increased their production capacity by 600% to 800%. Ideatechs Packaging Corporation was also a National SETUP PRAISE Awardee in 2021.

DOST-NCR also honored its best performing community during the 2022 RSTW. Barangay Balangkas in Valenzuela City was awarded as the Best CEST Community implementer in Metro Manila, acknowledging its significant development through the DOST’s scientific and technological interventions along the five CEST pillars: Livelihood and Enterprise Development, Human Resource Development, Health and Nutrition, Environmental Conservation and Protection, and Disaster Risk Reduction and Management and Climate Change Adaptation.

These awards bring much-deserved recognition to MSMEs and communities, not only as the DOST’s program partners, but as drivers of change, growth, and socio-economic development in their own ways through the application of science, technology, and innovation.

Metro Manilans will have more to look forward to as the DOST-NCR launched several new projects during the RSTW. These include Project REIINN (Resilient Education Information Infrastructure for the New Normal) in partnership with Barangay Bagong Silangan, Quezon City, Iron-Fortified Rice Blending Facility with the City Government of Navotas, Equipment Design and Prototyping Facility Project Phase 2 with the Colegio De Muntinlupa (CDM), S&T Assistance Support to Bureau of Jail Management and Penology – NCR (BJMP) Persons Deprived of Liberty (PDL), and Welfare Development Programfor the Cities of Caloocan, San Juan and Las Pinas. In addition, one unit of the DOST-developed STARBOOKS (Science & Technology Academic and Research-Based Openly-Operated Kiosks) was turned over to the City Government of Caloocan.

The 2022 RSTW in NCR was held for three days and drew hundreds of visitors who enjoyed simultaneous activities like S&T fora, technology bazaars, interactive exhibits, and science and technology competitions.

By: Shaira P. Rapisora, SCCU

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