Food And Nutrition Support For Underserved Communities
In Bangladesh, more than half the population suffers from different types of malnutrition, micronutrients deficiencies, and energy deficiencies while one in three children are afflicted by stunted growth due to malnutrition. Given this context, the current Covid-19 pandemic has added yet another dimension to an already existing crisis. With several people losing jobs nationwide, the impact is hitting the hardest to people who already are a victim to food insecurity. As the pandemic fuels poverty further, the entire situation has become a question of mere survival for millions of people in Bangladesh. More and more people are being detected for malnutrition due to lack of access to nutritious food, hygiene options with even lesser health awareness. Acute malnutrition thus continues to elevate as a result of the socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 leaving million more people under the threat of severe undernourishment. Without immediate action, this would take the number of people suffering from malnutrition to levels not seen this millennium.
Addressing this challenge, Spreeha brings a community-based Food and Nutrition Support project with an aim to prevent malnutrition and improve maternal, child, and adolescent nutrition in the underprivileged communities. From supply of nutritious food, medicines and hygiene materials to malnutrition screening to educating the communities, the project has taken up a number of interventions that that would thoroughly detect, prevent and treat malnutrition helping communities lead a healthy life.
Intervention 1: Monthly Food and Hygiene Supplies to Families
Monthly supply of nutritious food packages are being distributed among families living in urban slum areas. Besides assisting them with food packages, they are also provided with essential hygiene materials with specific usage guidelines so as to help them ensure a good hygiene.
Intervention 2: Screening for Malnutrition for Nutrition and Vitamin Supply
As part of our Screening for Malnutrition intervention, community officers work directly with the malnourished families. They assess the nutritional status of individuals and identify new cases of malnutrition as early as possible, so that timely interventions can prevent further deterioration.
Under five children, pregnant mothers and adolescents are assessed by nationally approved method while treating them with on-spot vitamin and nutrition supplement. In addition to that, patients are referred to our healthcare center for doctor’s consultation depending on their level of severity. Community officers pay regular home visit to pregnant mothers for malnutrition screening while bringing them under regular check-up, follow up, consultation and supplement intake so as to improve maternal and child nutrition.
Intervention 3: Providing community nutrition education
Facilitated by a network of skilled community officers, door to door nutrition education are carried out to increase awareness within the community. From advocating on how to prepare a balanced diet with limited food capacity to how to sustain nutrition food values using strategic cooking community members are advised on a number of viable ways that would help them make healthy food choices in their everyday life. They also guided on how to identify low cost nutritious foods enabling them develop healthy eating habits while keeping it economical at the same time.
Led by a professional team of nutritionists or doctors, this project is designed to help families and individuals ensure adequate nutritional uptake and prevent diseases of any kinds. In association with Confidence group, Spreeha Bangladesh has been running this project in the urban underserved communities of Rayerbazar since the beginning of the initiative. In light of adding value to people’s overall well-being, this integrated approach thus directly contributing to put end to all forms of malnutrition caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Spreeha Bangladesh inspires change by empowering people. With use of creative solutions, Spreeha enables individuals and communities to rise above social barriers. Spreeha envisions a world where people and communities are empowered to achieve their full potential.
Spreeha Bangladesh Foundation is a Bangladesh based social enterprise established in 2012, and was registered under the Trust Act II of 1882, on 7thMay, 2014. It is also registered with NGO Affairs Bureau (Reg. 2957, dated 13th August, 2015) for receiving foreign donations and grants.
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