• May 19, 2024
  • Last Update May 19, 2024 2:15 PM
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Baby Friendly Initiative

Baby Friendly Initiative

Nakuru,

Wednesday April 17 2024,

KNA by Veronica Bosibori

Following the continuous training of Community Health Promoters in Nakuru County (CHPs) by the Department of Health on the Baby Friendly Community Initiative, the CHPs have put their knowledge into action by introducing vertical gardening in hospital spaces to promote healthy eating habits.

The County Executive for Health, Ms Roselyn Mungai said vertical gardening is a simple concept where instead of plants growing horizontally in a traditional garden, they’re growing vertically, like climbing a ladder.

While speaking at the Dundori Health Center today she noted that vertical gardening is a space-saving and super-efficient way to grow all sorts of plants, from herbs and veggies to flowers. And, it’s the solution for lack of space or a big garden, like in cities or even on small balconies.

Additionally, she said Health Centers are a perfect place for training expectant mothers when attending antenatal clinics to start preparing earlier for kitchen gardens to enable them get a steady supply of quality vegetables and herbs such as rosemary that enhances their health and saves money for the family.

Further, she said food and nutrition security was at the focal point of achieving the 2030 goals, hence the need for the CHP to make it part of their primary education as they visit homes to enhance Universal Health Care in their areas of influence.

Although undernourishment has declined globally, the 2023 UNICEF report on Kenya estimates that a quarter of Kenyan children under five are stunted.

In matters of health, stunting is a major indicator of under nutrition, and it has injurious effects like diminished mental and physical development in children.

A nutritionist based in Nakuru city, Mary Njoki, said a number of families believe as long as the children’s bellies are full with ugali or uji, they are doing their best in feeding them.

However, she said feeding babies and children with too much starch without proteins has many consequences including stunting, frequent illnesses and poor performance at school.

Hence, equipping and prioritizing the well-being of communities hinges on nutritious foods that are within reach, therefore, the importance of kitchen or vertical gardens because the longer the food travels, the more the chances of contamination and loss of nutritional values.

Apart from the Ndundori CHPs who are encouraging vertical gardens, the Elburgon CHPs have been provided with a farm near Health Centers where they grow and demonstrate nutritious vegetables to their communities.

Courtesy; KNA

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