Home fortification of complementary foods for infants 6-23 months with MNPs is being piloted by the Ministry of Health to expand nationally later. The MNPs, are being introduced to strengthen IYCF and WASH practices. Overcoming low nutrition knowledge and poor practices in using MNPs is important and requires SBCC Interventions.
Led by MoH SPRING, a USAID funded project, UNICEF and WFP developed a communication plan using lessons from past MNP SBCC efforts. The plan aimed at creating an enabling environment, promoting MNPs as an effective nutrition and health intervention, ensuring proper and safe use of the product at home, while promoting recommended IYCF and WASH practices. Additional consultation of consumer research indicated that important context-specific communications were needed to overcome family resistance to accepting a new “packaged” additive. The resulting SBCC Toolkit is currently being piloted in 8 districts.
The MNP SBCC Tool Kit developed includes material about appropriate use, distribution and adherence. Methods include interpersonal communication, mass media and Community engagements. In Namutumba District which is supported by SPRING, a total of 106 health workers have been oriented in the SBCC Package
The experience in the development and implementation of the SBCC package underscores the role of communication in addressing key barriers to the products acceptance and appropriate use in promoting good IYCF and WASH practices. The next steps are to conduct mid – term and end-line studies on areas that are working well