Towards Desas and Kampungs Free of Malnutrition and Stunting
In July 2017 Asher Taccori, a volunteer from Australia (Australian Volunteer for International Development / AVID) joined YHS to support nutrition programs. With the YHS team, Asher collected primary and quantitative (secondary) data from the Health Department and area and villages clinics (PUSKESMAS and Posyandu) to determine which villages most needed help. Desa Laga Lete, where 24 of the 39 young children were stunted, emerged as in serious need of help.
The health program which YHS began in Laga Lete in 2017 covers all the basic of healthy village living:
- Clean and health habits (hand washing, using toilets, clean water)
- Nutritious food (growing vegetables and fruits in kitchen gardens)
- Understanding what are proteins and vitamins
- Planning for small families
- Pregnancy, breast feeding
- Campaigning for the first 1,000 days of life
- Monitoring of babies’ and toddlers’ weight and height in village clinics
- Training of clinic volunteers
- Early detection and intervention of malnutrition, disabilities
- Management of Indonesian Health Insurance cards
- Advocacy for using desa funding for health needs
This program will be replicated in other villages, adjusted to the conditions and potential of each region. Kampung Tana Kandumuk in desa Homba Karipit, Kodi Utara is one of the YHS model communities that began replicating this program in early 2018. The families are growing vegetables around their new village hall and in individual kitchen gardens.
For several yers YHS has worked with Vitamin Angels, an international NGO that has helped 61 million children and mothers in 74 countries. We administer Vitamin Angels-supplied vitamin A and deworming medicines to around 1,100 children in 10 desas each year.
After consultations with the communities and the Health Department, Vitamin Angels will increase the supplies for next year, and add special vitamins for pregnant women.