World Vision Malawi says the Malawi Maternal Newborn and Child Health (MMNeCH) programme has helped reduce stunting and prevalence of underweight in under-five children in selected areas of Mzimba and Nkhata Bay.
The programme is also touted for increasing access to essential maternal health services in the first three months of pregnancy, capacity of communities to prevent and manage HIV and Aids among mothers, new-borns, children and adolescents.
World Vision Malawi North zone manager Immaculate Suwira Bottoman has described the 2018 financial year as a success, but said a lot more needs to be done to build on the success.
“This success was a result of a number of integrated factors including improvement in basic hygiene with the proportion of households using improved sanitation facilities,” he said.
A summary report on World Vision interventions in the Northern Region for 2018 shows that stunting in under-five children has significantly continued to reduce in almost all the area programmes (AP) except for Sanga in Nkhata Bay which registered a slightly increased proportion of children with stunting (33 percent) compared to 30 percent registered in 2016.
“The zone also registered an average of eight percent prevalence of underweight which was below the World Health Organisation recommended threshold of 10 percent, improving from 12 percent registered in 2016,” states part of the report.
In November last year, the Zero Hunger and Malnutrition Strategic Review in Malawi said the country has reduced stunting among children from 47 percent to 37 percent in the past decade, which experts said is a sign of improved nutrition and food security.