Malnutrition: Nasarawa Community Volunteers, Mothers Demand More Support From UNICEF

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Gov Tanko Almakura of Nasarawa State

By; ALEX UANGBAOJE, Kaduna

Some Community Health Volunteers and benefiting mothers of malnourished children in Nasarawa State have lauded the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) for tackling malnutrition among children in the state and the country at large.

The volunteers and mothers however called for more support from the fund to eradicate malnutrition challenge in the area.

Mrs Fatima Musa, a Community Volunteer in Keffi, who spoke on Thursday during an interactive session with Dr Zakari Adam, the Chief of Field Officer, UNICEF Kaduna, said that the provision of Ready to Use therapeutic Food (RUTF) to malnourished children had improved on the lives of their children.

The report said Adam led other members of the fund on an assessment tour to one of its services, Community Management of Acute Malnutrition (CMAM), at Primary Healthcare Centre, Angwan Waje, Keffi, Nasarawa State.

Musa said that she decided to be community volunteer in order to contribute her quota to the development of the health sector.

“As community volunteer, our duty is to sensitise and educate women in various communities on the need for them to keep their environment clean and to maintain hygiene.

“We also educate them to visit Primary Healthcare centre in case if they found abnormality in their children.

“We told them to visit clinic for other health counselling as well as to test their children for appetite, and we also said that this service and food provided by UNICEF is free of charge.

“And through that you can see women taking their children for clinic in order to enjoy the services and we have achieved good results.

“We are thanking UNICEF for the gesture and we called for its substance,’’ said the volunteer.

She, however, appealed for more incentives to volunteers in order to boost their morale, standard of living and to take care of their local transportation and running.

Some of the benefiting mothers also commended UNICEF for the gesture.

They said that a lot of children lives had been saved in the area due to the services and food provided by UNICEF.

Responding, the Chief of Field Office, UNICEF Kaduna, urged the community volunteers to continue to offer their services in order to save the lives of children in the area.

Adam assured them that he would discuss with the chairman of the local government council to see how they can collaborate in order to address their challenges.

While urging them to continue to be dedicated and committed to their duties for the overall development of the health sector, he added that God would reward them abundantly.

Ms Chinwe Ezeife and Mr Rabiu Musa, the Nutrition Specialist and Communication Officer of UNICEF, Kaduna, respectively, supported the exercise.

The Ready to Use therapeutic Food (RUTF) provided by the UNICEF for malnourished children is been funded by Children International Foundation Fund.

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