By Eugene Mukuyungwa-ZANIS

Government has thanked its Cooperating Partners for their support towards the fight against Malnutrition in the Country.

Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Vice President, Lillian KAPUSANA says the partnership between Government and the Co-operating Partners in the quest to end stunting has started bearing fruits.

Mrs. KAPUSANA said this at KALIMA Village yesterday when she accompanied Cooperating Partners of the 1,000 Most Critical Days Phase Two Programme (MCDP II) who were on a fact-finding mission in Chienge District of Luapula Province.

And the Permanent Secretary has expressed satisfaction with how the Scaling Up Nutrition Programme is running in Chienge District.

Mrs. KAPUSANA said she is particularly impressed that the beneficiaries have taken ownership of the Programme.

She said it is the desire of Government to ensure that no case of Malnutrition is recorded in the Country and added that the zeal projected by the beneficiaries of the Scaling Up Nutrition Programme in Chienge District indicates that the Country is on the right trajectory.

Speaking earlier, Sarah CHANSA, a Nutrition Support Group Promoter thanked Government and its Cooperating Partner for its interventions against Stunting in the area.

Mrs. CHANSA said the multi-sectorial approach to the fight against stunting has brought about improved standards of living among the beneficiaries.

She said the beneficiaries are now able to have a diversified diet because they have been empowered with improved village Chickens, skills in Mushroom Growing, and how to make Key-hole Gardens where a variety of vegetable are grown.

Mrs. CHANSA said the beneficiaries of the Scaling Up Nutrition Programme are also being taught how to grow as well as preserve nutritious food.

The Nutrition Group Promoter said the Women in the Communities have also benefited from the 1,000 Most Critical Days Programme in that they are now able take care of themselves and their babies from the moment of conception up to when a child reaches two years.

“In the past we were not aware of how to take care of ourselves when we became pregnant and also how to care of the babies when they were born which resulted in stunting,” Mrs. CHANSA said.

A delegation comprising the United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), the Office of the Vice President, Luapula Provincial Administration, and the German Society for International Cooperation ( GIZ) visited Chienge District to have a feel of how the scaling up Nutrition Phase two Programs (SUN II) is running in Chienge District.

Others on the entourage were the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Scaling Up Nutrition TA (SUN TA) , Food and  Agriculture Organization (FAO), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the National Food and Nutrition Commission (NFNC)