Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Kenya: Women Blame Idle Men For Increase In Malnutrition In Pokot

The cultural practice where men while away the time sitting under trees, leaving the burden of providing for the family to women, has led to increased malnutrition in West Pokot.

The practice leaves women burdened with domestic and other chores, so they have little time to look for food.

The county has the highest malnutrition rate in the country, with a stunting rate of 45.9 percent, compared with the national figure of 35 per cent, according to the Demographic Health Report 2014.

Ministry of Health statistics indicate that Kapenguria District Hospital, the region's main referral facility, receives 70 to 100 malnourished children every month.

County Nutrition Officer Jane Limang'ura said households should strive to have enough food to reduce malnutrition.

Ms Limang'ura encouraged mothers to set up income-generating activities so that they can get money to buy food.

"We urge mothers to prioritise nutrition in their homes," she said and appealed to mothers to feed their children properly for the first 100 days.

But she noted that the government has instituted measures to mitigate the situation.

"We have a mother-to-mother support programme, where we have more than 100 support groups, baby-friendly initiatives, screening and referrals, and integrated outreaches," she said.