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A paradigm shift from the usual nutrition studies in the Gambia

  |   SUN Country Network, SUN Donor Network, SUN UN Network

On the 23rd December 2014, The National Nutrition Agency (NaNA) and the World Food Programme (WFP) validated two reports on studies conducted in the Central River Region and the North Bank Region of The Gambia. NaNA was contracted by WFP to undertake both projects which were funded by the European Union under the MDG1c project. The project seeks to empower communities with skills, tools and the knowledge to better feed themselves.

The Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education, NaNA and WFP worked together to conduct these two studies to provide the baseline information required to assess any changes brought about by the MDG1c project. Modou Cheyassin Phall , Executive Director of NaNA and SUN Government Focal Point, said that this was a kind of a paradigm shift from the usual studies do. Most of the studies conducted at NaNA are based on children under 5 years. Modou highlights that children born with low birth weight who become underweight or stunted through the years can transit into adolescence and adulthood malnourished which can have inter-generational effects.

The periodic assessment of the nutritional status of the general population, particularly of school aged children, helps to identify where the burden of malnutrition lies. The two reports, Nutrition Assessment of School Children and Knowledge, Attitude and Practices, will be useful in the formulation of the right information for nutrition education in schools and in the community.

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