UNICEF through World Vision Malawi has embarked on a project which aims at preventing malnutrition in under-five children and adolescents in Dedza district.
The project which is being implemented in four districts of Machinga, Mangochi, Salima and Dedza is in response towards the poor nutrition status and high prevalence rates of anemia in these districts.
In an interview with Malawi News Agency (MANA), project coordinator for World Vision, Blessings Makanje said the project is for five months and will be implemented in two Tradition Authorities (T/As) of Kachere and Kaphuka in the district.
“We hope that throughout the implementation period of the project we will be able to assist the care-group structure in these two T/As on the necessary knowledge on how to prevent malnutrition of under-five children, and also build capacity in health workers on the same,” he said.
Makanje added that the project would also strengthen the care-group structure to improve communities’ capability in identifying and managing malnutrition problems among them.
In his remarks Dedza District Hospital Nutritionist, Martins Mkandawire said the coming in of the project would help complement efforts by government and other partners in combating malnutrition of under-five children in the district.
“As Dedza District Nutrition Coordinating Committee (DNCC), our main focus is to build health communities in Dedza and strengthen coordination among government sectors and partners who are working on different nutrition interventions, so that we are going in the communities with one message to avoid confusing the people,” said Mkandawire.
He continued by asking World Vision to link themselves to other existing programs like Community Management of Acute Malnutrition (CMAM) noting in the course of implementation they will be able to learn some lessons that the program has encountered and how to improve on some challenges being faced.
Currently the rate of stunting in Dedza is at 35 percent compared to that of the nation which is at 37 percent.