Enhancing the capacity of Civil Society Organisations, district staff and communities in Scaling Up Nutrition initiative in Malawi

Enhancing the capacity of Civil Society Organisations, district staff and communities in Scaling Up Nutrition initiative in Malawi

Government Hails EU/OXFAM on Scaling up Nutrition (SUN) Project

I am impressed with the progress that has been made so far; these are the kinds of projects that we need to change people's lives.

National Authorising Officer

CONTEXT

The 2015-16 Malawi Health Demographic Survey found that children with small birth weight are almost twice as likely to die in the first month of life in Malawi. Good nutrition for pregnant mothers can therefore help decrease these deaths which will in turn reduce the country's child and infant mortality rate currently at 44 deaths per 1 000. In Malawi, only 8% of children aged 6-23 months meet the average minimum standards for the recommended infant young child feeding practices (MDHS 2015-16).

OBJECTIVES

  • To contribute towards improved nutritional status of rural households in Malawi.
  • To contribute to the strengthening of the ability of rural households and government district level staff in addressing nutrition issues affecting the under five children in the country.

RESULTS

  • 10% reduction in under-five mortality for the targeted communities
  • 60% increase in households that produce diverse nutritious foods in the targeted communities
  • Enhanced understanding and management capacity of government, district level structures and CSOs on household nutrition, and other nutritional issues
  • Increased capacity of district level staff to coordinate, deliver, and monitor nutrition initiatives at district level

FACTS AND FIGURES

  • Reaching out to 26 000 households; 16 000 with under five children and 10 000 with lactating and pregnant mothers. This will translate to 6,500 households reached per district and a total population of 143 000 people from all the four districts.

PARTNERS

TESTIMONY

I am very greatful to the project

Zelesi Sinkanako (30) from traditional authority Chitekwere in Lilongwe says she almost lost her child due to malnutrition. Zelesi says her child was among those that were malnourished in her village. She took her to the hospital and was given ready-to-use therapeutic food (chiponde) but the child never liked it and she mostly threw up every time she ate it.

Her child's weight decreased from 8.5 kilogrammes to 6. Things began changing for the better when the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) project led by Catholic Health Commission, Oxfam started in her area.

The project, which is part of FIDP Phase II of the Malawi government, is being financially supported by the European Union. Zelesi is among the many community members that have been taught how they can prepare meals that contain all the six food groups using locally available foods. Zelesi says she has now learned how she can prepare porridge for her child. "I am able to prepare porridge for my daughter in which I add cooking oil, eggs and vegetables, among others, and my child likes it", says Zelesi. "With this, my child's weight has improved from 6 kilogrammes — late last year— to 10 kilogrammes now."