The Nutrition Unit under the Directorate of Health Promotion and Education at the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare with support from the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) on Wednesday convened a days’ forum on nutrition and good hygiene for the community of Pirang in Kombo East.
The event, which brought together traditional communicators, women groups, village social groups and drama groups, was designed to disseminate key health information especially malnutrition and good hygiene.
Speaking at the ceremony, Deputy Director of Health Promotion and Education, Sanjally Trawally revealed that they are providing health services to not only the health facility level, but at all levels in the communities.
According to him, the primary health care level is based on the community in which they sensitise so as to engage people especially traditional communicators, village social groups and drama groups about health related issues.
Trawally indicated that recently they trained health workers in LRR on malnutrition.
Abdou Aziz Ceesay, Programme Manager, Nutrition Communication Unit at the National Nutrition Agency (NaNA), disclosed that the nutrition statistics is very high in the country, and this is why they trained traditional communicators and women groups to be able to sensitize others in their respective communities.
Alimatou Juwara, Deputy Programme Manager, Nutrition Unit, said malnutrition is a global health problem especially in sub-saharan Africa including The Gambia, and that it affects mainly women and children under five.
According to him, the 2013 demographic health surveys revealed that about 25% of the children in The Gambia are stunted, which is a chronic form of malnutrition, positing that looking at the smart survey that was conducted in 2015 by the NANa about 22.9% of children are stunted.
“According to the nutrition surveillance there has been over 70% of increase in the number of admissions in some cases.”
by Arfang MS Camara