Bafuta; Model Village in Mulanje
As one enters Bafuta village in Traditional Authority Sunganinzeru in Mulanje district, he or she will be greeted by soil plastered toilets, clean backyard gardens for vegetables and rubbish pits.
These are almost at every house. In fact the village’s environment is clean so to speak.
As if that is not enough, most children in the village show no any sign of malnutrition.
Village headman Bafuta attributed all these to a Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) project being implemented by Malawi Red Cross Society (MRCS).
“Even if the project phases out today; we will continue observing hygiene practices and preparing nutritious foods,” said VH Bafuta.
Acting Principal Nutrition and HIV/AIDS Officer Mayamiko Makondi said it is pleasing to see some villagers adopting nutrition and hygiene lessons which extension workers from both government and NGOs provide them.
“We have different partners that are implementing nutrition projects here in Mulanje and with proper coordination, surely we will manage to register significant reduction of stunting currently at 37% by 2022,” said Makondi.
District Coordinator for MRCS Innocent Chikuni said the organization links villagers to extension workers like Health Surveillance Assistants, Agricultural Extension Development Officers and Community Development Assistants for effective implementation of the project.
“It should be noted that nutrition goes together with sanitation and hygiene. Water borne diseases like diarrhea and cholera can cause malnutrition to some patients hence promoting nutrition, sanitation and hygiene in SUN project,” said Chikuni.
Chikuni said MRCS expects to contribute at least 2% annually to the reduction of stunting in its five year SUN project.