USAID Addresses Nutrition Deficit In Two Regions In Ghana

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through its Strengthening Partnership, Results and Innovations in Nutrition Globally (SPRING) project, has scaled up integrated nutrition- specific strategies to reduce the prevalence of chronic and acute malnutrition and micro-nutrient deficiencies in 15 districts in the Northern and Upper East Regions.

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Dr Edward Bonku, Chief of Party of SPRING said women in their reproductive ages and children under five would be targeted under the project which also aims at reducing stunting by 20 per cent in project areas.

wpid-USAID.jpgHe indicated that the project would be implemented by improving the delivery of high-impact nutrition services through increased demand for high-impact nutrition practice and services to ensure the adoption of high-impact nutrition habits.

Addressing a forum in Tamale on Tuesday during which an advocacy video documentary on stunting was launched to reduce its prevalence, he said the project would focus on a 1,000 day window period from pregnancy to a child’s second birthday among target groups.

The SPRING project is USAID’s multi-sectorial nutrition strategy which has the objective of improving nutrition to save lives, build resilience, increase economic productivity and advance development in target areas.

Mr Abdulai Abubakari, the Northern Regional Minister commended the USAID/SPRING project for its effort at reducing stunting and malnutrition among children noting that the USAID had been one of the biggest supporters for various projects aimed at alleviating the plight of the vulnerable.

He indicated that early sicknesses that lead to deaths must be avoided and stressed that, “Any project that seeks to ensure the reduction of stunting and anaemia among children and women is most welcome”.

Commenting on the stunting documentary, Mr Abubakari expressed happiness about the use of chiefs and religious leaders in the clip and said that was very prudent since it had the potential of advancing the objectives of the project but advised the implementers to complement the video with verbal explanations.

Mr Laslie Vanderpuije, Northern Regional Director of Pharmacy at the Ghana Health Service said the rate of malnutrition and undernourishment was very high in the Region and appealed to stakeholders to deepen efforts at addressing the situation.

He said for over a decade, more than 20 per cent of children in the region were stunting whiles others were underweight and urged parents to take good care of their children.

Source: GNA

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