For the past three years, the US Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Infant & Young Child Nutrition (IYCN) Project has supported the Ministry of Health and the National Food and Nutrition Commission to strengthen policies, programs, and health systems to improve the nutrition—and thereby prolong the lives— of mothers and their children younger than 2 years of age, including those affected by HIV. IYCN has collaborated with a wide range of partners to support mothers in adopting healthy feeding practices and to ensure a better future for Zambian communities and families.
The project focused on strengthening nutrition interventions within prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV programs and child health services and conducting supportive community-based activities. Since 2008, when the project began, health workers and community health volunteers in several districts have developed the skills and knowledge to help mothers improve nutrition for themselves and their babies. Formative research on maternal nutrition and child feeding practices has enabled stakeholders to understand beliefs and behaviors that contribute to poor nutrition. Structures are now in place for assessing the quality and consistency of health worker counseling. Additionally, messages to encourage changes in the way mothers feed their children have been disseminated through mass media.
Distribution of complementary foods was reported to the Global Nutrition Policy Review (GNPR) 2009-2010
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