Chronic malnutrition affects one quarter of Guinean children. To ensure adequate complementary feeding and accelerate the reduction of micronutrient deficiencies, the government and partners are introducing multiple micronutrient powders (MNPs), as part of an overall Infant and Young Child Feeding strategy in Guinea. The objective is to describe the introduction of an MNP program in Guinea using a community-based women’s group model.
Following high level advocacy that led to approval of introducing MNPs in Guinea by the government, a national community-based service delivery approach was developed using women’s community groups as the main channel. A mapping of women’s groups was conducted using a descriptive data sheet: name ofgroup, membership, frequency of meetings. Inclusion criteria included being in a nutrition cluster focus area, presence of implementing partners and leadership skills. An image box of Essential Nutrition Actions was developed as a training tool for community workers and women groups. Training of trainers followed by replication at a community level was organized.
Overall, 1,754 women’s groups were identified in 4 focus regions. Of the 1,754 women’s group, 290 were selected to implement the project in five prefectures. In total, 38 supervisors and 870 women group leaders were trained. Multiple Micronutrient powders boxes (n=629,291) were made available to cover 95,000 children 6-23 years old. Field reports analysis suggest high level of ownership by women’s group.
Organized women’s groups in Guinea could be an effective entry point for introducing MNPs and community communication for behavior change on key Nutrition Essential Actions.