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What works and Why? Evaluation of a Community Nutrition Programme in Kenya

Havemann, Kirsten and Pridmore, Pat and Tomkins, Andrew and Dandanell, Kristine (2012) What works and Why? Evaluation of a Community Nutrition Programme in Kenya. Journal of Public Health Nutrition.

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Objective: To investigate the nutritional impact of a community-based programme that focused on social cohesion and action. Design: The change in nutritional status of children aged 12–60 months was examined over a period of 3 years in Makueni District in Eastern Province of Kenya in six communities in which an intervention programme of Participatory Learning and Action was introduced and in ten communities in which only basic preparations were made but no intervention was started. Setting: The intervention was part of the Government of Kenya Community Based Nutrition Programme and was supported by the Government of Denmark. Subjects: Children aged 12–60 months. Results: Among communities without intervention there were similar levels of underweight (mean Z-score: -1·63 v. -1·50 (NS); % with Z-score < –2: 36·6 % v. 34·5 % (NS)) and stunting (mean Z-score: -2·0 v. -1·99 (NS); % with Z-score < –2: 44·3 % and 47·4 % (NS)) at baseline and after 3 years. By contrast, among communities who had received interventions, there were significant improvements after 3 years in the levels of underweight (mean Z-score: -1·66 v. -1·37 (P < 0·02); % with Z-score < –2: 42·9 % v. 31·4 % (P < 0·035)) and stunting (mean Z-score: -2·05 v. -1·59 (P < 0·05); % with Z-score < –2: 52·7 % v. 39·7 % (P < 0·02)). Conclusions: The results indicate considerable potential for using Participatory Learning and Action as a community-based approach to effectively address child undernutrition. It is suggested that these interventions are developed, implemented and evaluated more widely as a mean of tackling childhood undernutrition and improving child survival and development.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: The significance of this paper is that it demonstrates the potential for using community based social educational programmes to improve child health and nutrition. It reports on a controlled study in Kenya which evaluates the impact on the nutritional status of under five year olds of a social educational process to promote Social Cohesion and Action. Among communities who received the social educational process there was significant improvement after 3 years in levels of underweight compared to communties which had not.
Divisions: IOE Departments > Departments > Education and International Development
IOE Departments > Departments > Humanities and Social Sciences
Depositing User: Atira Pure
Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2014 17:10
Last Modified: 29 Jan 2015 08:35
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