A project to help improve the health of mothers and children in 7 African countries, increasing the access to and quality of mother and baby, neonatal and nutritional services in the first 1,000 days of a child’s life.
Mission: Working together for inclusion
The importance of ensuring good nutrition, especially during pregnancy and early childhood, is recognised as a priority under the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Goal 2: end hunger, achieve food security and better nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture). The goal of the “Mothers and children first – Let’s feed them” project is therefore to contribute to improving the health of mothers and children in the 7 intervention countries (Angola, Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia, Sierra Leone, South Sudan and Mozambique), increasing the access to and quality of mother and baby, infant, neonatal and nutritional services in the first 1,000 days of a child’s life. Direct recipients of the intervention are pregnant women (and their newborn babies), 50,000 children whose growth will be monitored up to 2 years of age, to combat chronic malnutrition, and 10,000 children suffering from severe acute malnutrition, who will be treated. The project also includes the following important actions:
- training of health personnel in hospitals and health centres to provide assistance with childbirth and resuscitation for newborn babies, conduct prenatal and post-natal visits, and monitor growth, ensure immunisation and prevention and treat nutritional deficiencies;
- supply to hospitals and health centres of assistance, materials and drugs needed to avoid shortages of essential equipment and guarantee the quality of prevention and treatment activities in prenatal and postnatal settings as well as childbirth;
- training of community agents in the field of nutrition, in order to guarantee adequate education for women on nutrition for mothers, infants and children, and promoting good hygiene, health and nutritional practices at community level by disseminating information adapted to the local place and culture on maternal, neonatal and child health (including assistance with childbirth);
- working with local authorities to promote the monitoring and assessment of data regarding access to childbirth and prenatal and post-natal services and monitoring of child growth, planning and implementing operational research in specific project areas in order to evaluate and compare different practices and actions between different contexts with the ultimate goal of establishing effective and replicable models.
Through annual meetings or by participating in specific forums, the project also disseminates the data collected in order to increase awareness among local and international partners, public and private, of the relevance and cost-benefit of investments in mother and child nutrition. Find out more at mediciconlafrica.org