Monday, February 10, 2014

Inonge advises men to get involved in nutritional activities
By Allan Mulenga
Thu 21 Nov. 2013, 14:01 CAT

GENDER minister Inonge Wina has urged men to be fully involved in nutritional-related activities as they are the ones who make decisions bordering on the well-being of families.

During the national learning and sharing event on the role of gender in improving nutrition hosted by Concern Worldwide Zambia in Lusaka yesterday, Wina observed that men often have a bigger say on the usage of land and money in the home.

"These decisions look simple, but they have an important effect on the nutritional status of children. If a husband, for instance, decides that he is only going to grow cotton, what does that mean for the nutrition of the children? she asked.

Wina commended Concern Worldwide Zambia for implementing projects encouraging men to support women in growing a variety of foods rich in micronutrients.

"As a result of these efforts, there is a reported change of attitudes by men in relation to decisions of agriculture and nutrition. Further, husbands are assisting their wives in identifying and providing land for homestead gardens, they are assisting their wives with chores such as fetching water and accompanying their wives to health centres for antenatal care. All these activities are connected to improved nutrition in the home," she said.

Wina urged men and women to continue working together in promoting better nutrition outcomes.

And Concern Worldwide Zambia country director Danny Harvey said her organisation had been implementing the Realigning Agriculure to Improve Nutrition (RAIN) project in Mumbwa and Shibuyunji districts, in partnership with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFRPI), since 2011.

Harvey explained that the RAIN project focuses on sustainable agriculture, nutrition and health interventions to effectively prevent child and maternal under nutrition among rural communities.

"RAIN activities include; working with women's groups, coordinate small model farmers, to promote the production of micro-nutrient rich and diverse food crops, coordination and support of community health volunteers to deliver health and nutrition education and communication, rehabilitation of boreholes and the promotion of gender equality," she said.

Harvey commended the government and other stakeholders for partnering with her organisation in the implementation of the project.

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