The Initiative to End Child Malnutrition (IECM)
Country of Operation
- Global Hunger Initiative (GHI)Not-for-profit
SummaryThe IECM is designed to reduce child morbidity and mortality associated with malnutrition in Rukungiri District, Uganda. This is done through offering outpatient treatment for malnutrition.
Despite malnutrition being a major cause of child morbidity and mortality in under-resourced areas like Rukungiri District, in Uganda, where 30-40% of children suffer from acute or chronic malnutrition, the crisis within this district remains largely unaddressed. This led to the formation of the Initiative to End Child Malnutrition (IECM), which is an integrated intervention that encompasses both hospital-based treatments for malnutrition as well as community-based malnutrition training, education and outreach. The overall goal of the project is to reduce child morbidity and mortality associated with malnutrition in Rukungiri District, Uganda, while utilizing a locally sustainable model.
Key program components
The project operates a hospital-based child malnutrition referral center for the treatment of severe malnutrition cases; offers education/ training programs for community health center workers on malnutrition identification and referral; operates community outreach and awareness campaigns in villages and community centers. The project developed a national nursing school curriculum on child malnutrition; a community garden/nutrition education initiative, and established a social enterprise in the form of a hospital canteen to generate revenue that would subsidize the cost of treatment, allowing the hospital to offer patients a low flat-rate fee for malnutrition care. During Summer 2010 and Winter 2011, 12 GHI students trained 9 community health center staff on child malnutrition topics; and conducted malnutrition education trainings for 80 local Ugandan nursing students.