IRIN Africa | GUINEA: Funds needed to stem child malnutrition – WFP | West Africa | Guinea | Children Health & Nutrition Conflict Aid Policy | News Item

Posted: January 7, 2010 in Children, poverty
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DAKAR, 6 January 2010 (IRIN) – The UN World Food Programme (WFP) in Guinea is seeking funds to re-stock nutritional centres which are running out of essential fortified foods at a time of rising malnutrition.

The latest monthly nutritional survey in the capital, Conakry, showed that moderate acute malnutrition rose to 8.4 percent in December from 6.9 percent in November. The surveillance, funded by the Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance, is carried out by Helen Keller International (HKI), the Health Ministry and the government humanitarian office.

Families are increasingly bringing children to NGO-supported nutritional centres but because of a shortage of corn-soya blend (CSB), vegetable oil and sugar – used for treating moderate acute malnutrition – WFP can no longer supply the centres as needed, according to agency officials.

“The demand for CSB is greater than the supply and currently we do not have the funds to furnish all nutritional centres,” Foday Turay, WFP-Guinea head of programme unit, told IRIN.

“WFP is therefore appealing urgently for funds to replenish its stocks of CSB, as well as vegetable oil and sugar, so that we can continue providing much-needed nutritional support throughout Guinea.”

WFP is seeking funds to help 25,000 children and 7,000 pregnant and lactating women.

Mamady Daffe, head of the Health Ministry’s nutrition unit, told IRIN: “Resources for malnutrition treatment are quite limited and this means the situation is worsening by the day.”

High child malnutrition rates are common throughout West Africa; some 4.5 million under-five children, or 9.9 percent, suffer acute malnutrition, according to the Food Security and Nutrition Working Group.

via IRIN Africa | GUINEA: Funds needed to stem child malnutrition – WFP | West Africa | Guinea | Children Health & Nutrition Conflict Aid Policy | News Item.

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