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  • Llean Danica B. Santos

Poor Nutritional Status of Children

Children are the treasure of a community. They determine the future, and giving them a solid foundation of good nutrition would ready them to face a future of uncertainty and overcome it. Malnutrition in all forms is closely linked, either directly or indirectly, to major death and disability worldwide (WHO 2013). Malnutrition is multifactorial and multifaceted, contributing to a worldwide health problem mostly affecting children under 5 years old. Despite the wide implementation of programs to combat malnutrition in all its forms, it is still a threat to children globally. In Barangay the Bag-ong Dalaguete, 30% children are within the category of underweight for their weight-for-age according to the recent house-to-house survey with height and weight taking for children 59 months old and below.

Malnutition, which is a vicious cycle, if not properly addressed, will lead to a lifelong consequence of poor health and well-being. Numerous studies conclude that good health starts with proper and adequate nutrition in the womb. Good nutrition does not only imply adequate food consumption but includes physical activity and healthy behaviour. Our proposed solutions are geared in changing the mindset of the people in Bag-ong Dalaguete towards healthy lifestyle and taking in their hands the responsibility of pursuing good nutition for themselves and their families. Our programs will focus on creating a community that would work hand-in-hand to build a good foundation for their children’s health and prioritize in making healthy decisions. It would include assessing every child less than 5 years old and creating a database to monitor children’s growth and development. It will also include a creation of a team that would be well-equipped and knowledgeable in taking anthropometric data. Health programs will be done in order to teach mothers and pregnant women on how to give proper food and care to their children.A feeding program will also be implemented to normalize the weight of underweight children.

Our General Objective is to decrease the number of underweight children ages 0-59 months from 30% to 10% in Barangay Bag-ong Dalaguete, Mahayag, Zamboanga del Sur by the year 2020. In order to achieve this, we plan to:

  1. Establish an effective growth monitoring system for children 0-59 months in Barangay Bag-ong Dalaguete

  2. Increase the knowledge of community residents regarding the importance of proper infant and young child feeding.

  3. Increase availability and sustainability of food supply in the community of Bag-ong Dalaguete.

  4. Increase the utilization of existing health programs and strategies for malnutrition.

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