Kakamega County Executive Committee Member (CECM) for Health Services Dr. Bernard Wesonga presided over a colorful graduation ceremony for 64 children graduands from the Positive Deviance (PD) Hearth Program following completion of a successful 90 days rehabilitation exercise of the children and extensive nutrition training of their mothers conducted at Matete Sub-County Hospital in Lugari Sub-County.
Addressing residents during the event themed “Towards Eradication of Malnutrition in Kakamega,” Dr Wesonga appreciated partners for facilitating the program that he stated, has been instrumental in improving health, nutritional standards and children development in the area.
The approach, the CECM noted, has led to empowerment of families and the community at large with regards to rehabilitation and sustainability of the children while at home and encouraged mothers to share the knowledge with others to improve children’s health.
Dr Wesonga also noted that through sustained efforts by the County Nutrition team and other multisectoral collaborations’ interventions, the malnutrition rates in Kakamega have drastically reduced from 28 percent in 2014 to 11 percent currently.
PD Hearth Program is an Agri-Nutritional program sponsored by World Vision targeting malnourished children aged between 6 to 36 months, identified by Community Health Promoters.
The programme is currently being piloted in Chevaywa and Lwandeti Wards in Lugari Sub-County where the children are taken through 90 days nutrition training and rehabilitation sessions by trainers and Nutritionists after which they are weighed periodically after every 30 days, for 90 days to determine their progress. Upon gaining the recommended weight they are allowed to pass out.
Keziah Ouma from World Vision commended the County Government for the commitment leading to successful implementation of the program, noting that the organization’s aim is to eradicate malnutrition in Kakamega County.
She called for further collaboration between the Government and other stakeholders to scale up the program to other Sub-Counties.
In attendance were Chief Officer Public Health Hon. George Mukodo, County Nutrition Coordinator Margaret Oyugi, Government Officers and Partners (USAID Boresha Jamii, SOFDI, Hellenkeller International and ADS).