By; ALEX UANGBAOJE, Kaduna
As part of efforts to ensure there is improvement in consumption of eggs among children beteen the ages six to 59 months in Kaduna State, an NGO, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) on Friday launched a demand creation campaign in the State.
GAIN Country Director, Dr Michael Ojo, explained at the launching ceremony in Kaduna, that the campaign tagged “Eggs Make Kids”, targets over 210,000 households.
Ojo said that the campaign would be carried out in Chikun, Kaduna North and Kaduna South Local Government Areas of the state.
He noted that despite efforts to address the scourge of malnutrition, malnutrition remain a serious problem in the state because most children were not eating food that provides the growth-promoting nutrients they need.
According to him, animal source foods such as egg, meat and fish are mostly missing in the food children eat, adding that only 15.5 per cent of children six to 23 months consume egg in the state.
“We are, therefore, working with Kaduna State and other partners to diversify the diet of children six to 59 months by increasing animal source food consumption particularly egg.
“Egg is nature’s most nutritious food, because of its rich source of protein and essential fatty acids, including vitamins and minerals.
“One small egg for example has 13 vitamins, 11 minerals, all nine essential amino acids, omega-3, omega-6, as well as two carotenoids.
“Egg make the body grows strong, help the heart and brain function well, build strong bones and teeth and keep the mind sharp and bright.”
He said that the campaign would run for the next 18 to 20 months using two-pronged marketing and communication approach.
He described the approaches as Above the Line campaign, using the mass media and Below the Line campaign, through direct engagement of households.
The country director said that the campaign would be carried out in partnership with Kaduna State Emergency Nutrition Action Plan, Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN) and other partners.
Flagging-off the campaign, Ummi El-Rufai, wife of the Kaduna State Governor, thanked GAIN for supporting the state in the fight to address malnutrition in the state.
She noted that failure to eat the right nutritious food, exposes children to myriad of poor health outcomes.
She said that the campaign would disseminate key messages that will stimulate sustainable behaviour change, particularly on egg consumption in target communities.
According to her, intake of adequate animal source protein like egg and fish will contribute to better health outcomes for children in the state.
Hajiya Binta Adamu, Vice Chairperson, PAN, Kaduna State Chapter, expressed readiness to partner with GAIN to ensure the success of the campaign.