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Fighting malnutrition in Ethiopia

In Ethiopia, Concern Worldwide’s charity work includes a programme that informs women about ways to prevent childhood malnutrition.

Essential actions

Malnutrition is very common in Ethiopia, especially in young children. This is largely due to poor knowledge about nutrition. We’ve established a simple yet effective programme to help prevent child malnutrition. We do this by informing mothers about better feeding practices and ways to help children recover more quickly from illness. We train communities in seven essential subjects including breastfeeding and when to introduce solid foods.

Food education

We distributed vegetable seeds and tools to families so that they grow a variety of food for their children. We also host cooking demonstrations at public gatherings.

Important lessons

The programme has been very successful. The simple things we have taught people are enabling them to save their children’s lives. Yesin Kassa, a voluntary community health worker said:

Since I’ve been giving people these messages, mothers have been practising the actions and children’s weighing statuses have improved. I am very happy because I have not seen any malnourished children since this project started. 

When my children were babies I did not give them colostrum and I did not breastfeed properly. None of my children have been healthy. They have all had parasitic diseases, and now I feel discomfort about this. I was given no advice. Now we know the advantages of proper feeding practices. It is clear for me now and I am very happy to be doing this role for my community.