In 2013 medical journal, the Lancet, confirmed that malnutrition is the underlying cause behind 45% of child deaths under five. But the government is showing it has the political will to address the problem, having signed up to the Nutrition for Growth agreement and joined the Scaling Up Nutrition (Sun) movement, a collective effort from governments, civil society, the UN, donors, businesses and researchers. It’s involvement in Sun is being led by the vice-president’s office. “It’s come to the point where everybody knows it’s not just health related, you need to have all the players on board to tackle malnutrition,” says Aminata Shamit Koroma, director of food and nutrition at Sierra Leone’s the ministry of health. As the country moves from post-conflict to emerging market, the government realises that it must shift from treatment of malnutrition to prevention. Agriculture, education, gender equality and sanitation all have a role to play in this. “We’ve seen that women with a higher educational level are less likely to have malnourished children. You need good sanitation. You need food to be affordable, accessible for people to be able to purchase and feed themselves,” says Koroma. In Sierra Leone, Koroma focuses on promoting breastfeeding as a key policy for reducing stunting and malnutrition among younger generations. The message that babies should be exclusively breastfed for the first six months of their lives is broadcast over the radio, during awareness weeks and via mother-to-mother support groups. “Experienced mothers counsel young mothers,” she says. “We’ve found that the barrier to exclusive breastfeeding is tradition. Grandmothers tell mothers they need to give the baby water because it’s thirsty. We use this same medium [grandmothers] to go back to the mothers and say, you don’t have to give the baby water. Breast milk has everything the child needs for the first six months.”
(LEACH, Anna Veronica. Adaptado de: Guardian Professional, Monday 16 June 2014 12.39 BST. Disponível em:
Em relação à subnutrição, considere as afirmativas a seguir.
I. O vice-presidente de Serra Leoa faz ações para, primeiro, tratar a subnutrição e, posteriormente, preveni-la.
II. As mães com menor nível de escolaridade são mais propensas a amamentar seus filhos.
III. Vários elementos estão envolvidos no combate à subnutrição, entre eles, a igualdade de gênero e o saneamento básico.
IV. O incentivo ao aleitamento materno tem sido o ponto central na política para diminuir a subnutrição.
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