Ghana’s ministry of health services has received a major boost in its bid to reduce stunting, wasting and severe acute malnutrition in the country’s North East region. UNICEF in partnership with China AID announced on Monday they will provide support to the West African country with an investment of $1 million.
The funds are aimed at ensuring nutrition supplements and supplies such as iron-folic tablets, vitamin A supplements, weighing scales and height boards, ready-to-use therapeutic foods, therapeutic milk and essential medicines have been provided for children and adolescents in the region.
Abdulai Abukari, Ghana’s regional director for health services in the Northeast, said malnutrition is still threatening the survival and development of young children in Ghana and accounts for approximately 24 percent of child deaths and stunts children’s growth and cognitive development.
This, coupled with multiple shocks brought on by the COVID-19 crisis, has worsened the situation. He added economic difficulties, reduced food supply and spikes in food prices on the market after the lock-down period threatened to derail progress made to improve nutrition of children.
“Thanks to support from China AID through UNICEF, more children are receiving timely and necessary treatment. Malnutrition in children if ignored or not treated will lead to poor academic performance, which in the long run will not help Ghana’s development,” Abukari said.