Children’s malnutrition levels sadden First Lady


FIRST Lady Christine Kaseba says it is sad that 45 percent of children under the age of five suffer from chronic under nutrition and stunted growth in Zambia.
Dr Kaseba has challenged the government and policy-makers to enhance social safety nets in accelerating poverty reduction.
“There is need to strengthen safety nets to accelerate poverty reduction. Government needs to become more nutrition-sensitive and share prosperity in Zambia,” Dr Kaseba said at a fundraising dinner dance on Saturday.
Dr Kaseba bemoaned the malnutrition statistics that had remained the same in the past 20 years in Zambia.
She said it is important to nurture natural resources for food security in the community.
Addressing business executives from Australia and some representatives of corporate entities in Zambia, Dr Kaseba said nutrition education was important because malnutrition was not always due to lack of food but failure to eat the right types of food.  “Awareness towards prevention of malnutrition through health education on food preparation, hygiene and food handling should be supported in our communities,” Dr Kaseba said.
The First Lady also said it was pleasing that the government through the Ministry of Health has introduced outreach programmes aimed at combating malnutrition at community level.
And an Australian Charity Health Hope for Zambia has donated K1.4 million for the rehabilitation of the pediatric malnutrition ward E07 at the UTH.
Health Hope Zambia founder Brendan Clark said the donation has so far treated up to15,000 children free of charge.
“This is a very selfless act. The people supporting this project feel very special to be part of this programme. It’s a long-term programme and we are excited about the future of our mobile medic clinic working in Zambia,” Mr Clark said.
Mr Clark also said the project will continue to introduce other auxiliary programmes aimed at educating the communities on preventing malnutrition.
“Our donation to the UTH will go towards renovations, furniture and reconstruction of a malnutrition ward,” Mr Clark said.