Government moves to end hunger in rural areas

26 Jun, 2022 - 00:06 0 Views
Government moves to end hunger in rural areas Zimbabwe Resilient Building Fund

The Sunday News

Johnsias Mutonhori, Midlands Correspondent
THE Government has embarked on implementing various projects in rural areas in a move to end hunger and malnutrition through the Zimbabwe Resilient Building Fund (ZRBF).

Nutrition Action Zimbabwe

In partnership with Nutrition Action Zimbabwe (NAZ), the Government is prioritising care groups to spearhead nutrition projects in communal areas across the country. Farming activities are also being supported, especially indigenous crops which can thrive under the prevailing climate change.

The programmes are running in line with Sustainable Development Goals (SDG 2), which are dedicated to ending hunger, achieving food security, improving nutrition and promoting sustainable agriculture.

This is also in sync with the African Union 2022 declaration theme which is; Strengthening Resilience in Nutrition and Food Security on the African Continent.

Speaking during a national nutrition learning event in Gweru on Thursday last week, deputy director for nutrition in the Ministry of Health and Child Care Mr Handrea Njovo said it was Government’s priority to address malnutrition, child and maternal health issues among rural communities.

“The Government is committed to the survival of children and women in the country and in this regard has made great strides to address child and maternal health issues in the context of international and regional agreements aimed at improving maternal and child health.

The care group approach has been prioritised by the Ministry of Health and Child Care as a high impact approach for reducing the burden for stunting in line with the Nutrition Security of National Development Strategy 1.

National Development Strategy 1

The NDS1 provides all stakeholders with a time bound opportunity, to strengthen joint effort and achieve a healthier and more sustainable future,” he said.

He added that nutrition plays a significant role in the development of the nation and attainment of Vision 2030.

“Therefore, investing in nutrition promotion prevails as a powerful instrument to provide a productive and a prosperous nation towards the achievement of Vision 2030 which is to transform Zimbabwe into an upper middle-class,” he said.

Mr Njovo said investing in nutrition extends to address adversities induced by climate change.

“The nutrition component implemented in the ZRBF project aimed to build and strengthen beneficiaries’ capacities to withstand shocks and disasters as well as build resilience in the face of climate change-induced adversities by improving their absorptive, adaptive and transformative capacities,” he said.

A participant during the event, Headman Sinikiwe Musike from Zvishavane said his community was now focusing on growing indigenous crops as a strategy in this climate change environment.

“The changing rain patterns have made us focus on growing small grains which can adapt to climate changes.

ZRBF programme taught us about the richness of our indigenous crops and fruits and we now feel like we were tricked to believe that only maize can make healthy food,” he said.

Rural communities have been identified as a society with high malnutrition rate, infant mortality and food deficiency-related diseases due to lack of balanced diet.

Climate changes have also forced farmers, mostly those from rural areas to turn back to indigenous crops.

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