World Vision Ghana (WVG) has officially commenced its ‘Improved Feeding Practices (IFP) for the First 1000 Days’ project in response to the malnutrition challenges in Ghana.
The four-year project is being undertaken in three districts namely; Kassena Nankana West District (Upper West), Sekyere East (Ashanti Region) and Kintampo South (Bono East).
The project, which would be beneficial to 4,800 households in 70 communities at a cost of $3,444, 804 is funded by the Japan Social Development Fund (JSDF) through the World Bank with support from World Vision Japan.
Mr. Dickens Tunde, National Director, WVG, in his address at the national launch of the project in Accra on Thursday, said the project was meant to improve feeding practices among pregnant and lactating women, adolescent girls and children under two years.
Mr. Tunde said a 2021 UNICEF report which revealed that one in every five children in Ghana experiences stunted growth during the first 1000 days of life therefore necessitating the need to help ensure that children reached their full physical and cognitive potential so as to increase their productivity as adults.
He said WVG was working with the Ministry of Health, Ghana Health Service, Ministry of Food and Agriculture and other partners to ensure a greater impact in confronting the challenges in the nutrition sector.
“We will strengthen these working relationships to ensure that children enjoy good health; are cared for, prepared and participating in community life.
“We will continue to do this to give practical expression to our bias for the sustained well being of children, especially the most vulnerable families and communities in all our interventions,” he said.
Mr. Kwabena Boadu Oku-Afari, Chief Director, Ministry of Health, said the project came at an opportune time when they were trying to improve maternal and child health in communities, districts and at the national level.
“It is for this reason that the Ministry of Health in August 2021, launched the start right, feed right-from birth to years’ campaign. The objective of this campaign is to improve exclusive breastfeeding and promote good nutrition for young children in Ghana, with the long term objective of increasing the percentage of children fed at the minimum acceptable diet from 13% to at least 30% by 2025,” he added.
He informed that World Vision’s ‘IFP for the First 1000 Days’ project was in alignment with government’s policies and strategies of ensuring health care delivery and also complemented their efforts to address malnutrition challenges.