IR3. Increasing Utilization of Quality Nutrition Services
It is essential that women and children have access to and utilize evidence-based nutrition-specific interventions and health services to prevent and treat infectious diseases. Key facility-level nutrition interventions include vitamin A supplementation, deworming, iron and folic acid (IFA) for pregnant women, zinc and oral rehydration therapy (ORT) for diarrhea, MIYCN and WASH, management of acute malnutrition, and nutrition management of infectious disease.
Building on successful ENGINE work, Growth through Nutrition will focus on the following intervention areas:
- Improve delivery of quality nutrition services for children and pregnant and lactating women
- Support sustained supply of commodities to deliver quality nutrition services
- Support information system development for decision-making and program management
Key Progress in Project Year II
Growth through Nutrition provided Technical Assistance (TA) to the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) in updating the national Quality Improvement (QI) Training of Trainers (TOT) manual and developing community-based health services quality package; established 75 model QI sites; trained 1462 health workers and HEWs; and facilitated eight experience exchange visits for health workers from non-QI model Primary Health Care Units (PHCUs) to model QI sites.
The project trained 12,645 health workers (HWs), health extension workers (HEWs), agriculture extension workers (AEWs) and agriculture and health development army leaders on maternal and infant young child nutrition using standardized government training materials to improve nutrition services health centers, health posts in the community. The project conducted 983 mentoring and coaching technical support visits to health facilities.
Growth through Nutrition provided Integrated Pharmaceutical Logistics System (IPLS) training to 24 project staff and by integrated nutrition supply management related coaching in all health facilities visited for coaching. It also conducted nine assessments to monitor coverage of nutrition commodities in selected project supported PHCUs. The assessments highlighted gaps in key nutrition commodities which were reported to GoE counterparts for action at all levels.
Key Progress in Project Year III
The project responded to a call for emergency health system support in Year III to handle an Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) situation and prevent disruption of quality health and nutrition service delivery in one of its implementation regions.
Growth through Nutrition also provided technical assistance to finalize a Quality Improvement (QI) manual for community health services as well as to revitalize the health service quality technical working group.
Additionally, the project conducted 59 experience exchange visits to exhibit implementation of QI approaches, at Public Health Care Units to federal, regional, and zonal QI experts and 71 learning for staff from non-model to model PHCUs to encourage replication and scale-up of effective QI approaches.
Key Progress in Project Year IV
In year IV, the project continued to support the Ministry of Health in conducting Training of Trainers, providing training to 341 health workers. The project also provided technical and financial support to the Ministry to develop draft clinical audit standards for Health Centers and conducted 80 field visits to strengthen commitment from local and regional teams to scale up QI approaches.
Growth through Nutrition also facilitated a number of experience sharing visits (75 visits in total), in which 190 non-QI PCHUs visited QI sites to learn key lessons and practices despite significant ongoing security challenges during the year. The exercise in diffusion proved successful, with 90 percent of the visiting facilities beginning to apply the Kaizen model.
An assessment on effectiveness of AMIYCN/NSA training evaluated the integrated activity of the agriculture and health sectors – allowing project staff to modify training content on complementary feeding, diversity, and gender in Year III. In year IV, the project conducted follow up visits to assess the impact of the training on nutritional services.
During world breastfeeding week, the project provided technical and financial support to regions that campaigned for breastfeeding and improved child health – wherein breastfeeding messages were integrated into COVID-19 messaging.
Growth through Nutrition Hosts Webinar on the lessons learned in Key Health, Nutrition and Agricultural Services in the face of COVID-19 in Ethiopia
On the 3rd of February, 2021, Growth through Nutrition invited professionals from Ethiopia and beyond to discuss some lessons learned in the health and agriculture sectors during the COVID-19 pandemic. The webinar, which was organized by Tufts University, aimed to highlight key lessons in both sectors by presenting findings from two recent complementary studies on provision of frontline health and agricultural services. Moderated by Rahel Gizaw, Senior Learning Advisor for the Growth through Nutrition Activity, the event featured two speakers Dr.
Webinar Summary Notes - Key Health, Nutrition, and Agricultural Services in the Face of COVID-19 in Ethiopia: Lessons Learned
On February 3, 2021, the Growth through Nutrition Activity hosted a webinar event on the topic “Key Health, Nutrition, and Agricultural Services in the Face of COVID-19 in Ethiopia: Lessons Learned,” and presented and discussed some of the key findings from two recent studies investigating changes in the health and agricultural sectors and time use of Health Extension Workers (HEWs) before and after the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Webinar: The Role of Animal Source Foods in Nutrition Security, Growth and Early Child Development: Benefits, Opportunities and Challenges
Animal sourced foods (ASFs) are nutrient-dense foods that when consumed in small amounts provide quality protein, vitamins, minerals, and amino acids, and all nutrients critical for growth and early child development. In this webinar, Dr. Shibani Ghosh will examine the role of Animal Source Foods in improving the nutritional status of vulnerable populations, present multi-country analyses assessing the role of the type of ASF and the total number of ASFs, and contextualize the opportunities and challenges in supporting actions promoting its consumption.
On December 1, 2020 - Tufts University, in collaboration with Save the Children International conducted a webinar and discussed the core elements of food systems, external drivers, and poliitical economy issues that facilitate or impede important changes in food systems. It also covered critical gaps in knowledge regarding the tradeoffs embedded in the SDGs, as well as policies that could bring about dramatic changes in food systems. the major lessons and paths forward in regards to improving food systems transformations to meet nutritional needs in a sustainable manner.
Success Story - Tomorrow’s success – how a saving group transformed Kemeru Abdela’s life for the better
When Kemeru Abdela became a project beneficiary, she and her husband were living on a meager production and supporting their livelihood by working on her neighbors' farms for additional income in Galama Hebano kebele. Since subsequently joining a saving group - Milkaina Boru (which mean's "tomorrow's success"), and receiving livestock from the project - Kemeru proved that better nutrition and health behaviors are very possible, given the right resources and drive.
In Debark Woreda of North Gondar, Bizuwork Zewdu, a Health Extension Worker, is just one of many who have felt the impact of Grant under Grant, a growth through nutrition initiative. Bizuwork engages actively in securing a better future for her community's nutrition, working with mothers to demonstrate best practices in Deber HEalth post, where she works.
The paper below is a summary of key research findings, lessons learned and program/policy recommendations from operation research studies conducted under the Growth through Nutrition and its predecessor ENGINE project. It also highlights some of the ways the project learning, research dissemination and capacity building activities have had a positive outcome of turning “research into action” and summarizes the way forward.
On the 11th of March, 2020 - Save the Children U.S finalized an internal mid-term evaluation of the project activity's overall performance using a quantitative research study and program review.
When Atsede Seifu first joined the Tekeze Health Post in Welkait Wereda as a Health Extention Worker, she was highly affected by “that intensive sadness and worry of seeing children suffer from malnutrition despite the availability of different food items in their hands or at home.” With this motivation, she set about implementing quality improvement models supported by Growth through Nutrition following her on-the-job training - improving the organized records of the facility's services.