Tackling malnutrition is at the core of the growth and development of a nation. The Uganda Demographic and Health Survey (UDHS, 2016) brought to the fore very glaring malnutrition challenges for the country. Anthropometric indicators for children were collected to provide outcome measures of nutritional status, and in the Tooro Sub Region where we implement nutrition interventions, the stunting situation of children was appalling. The Tooro region’s stunting rate for children under the age of five stood absurdly at 40.6 percent, above the national average of 39 percent. Since 2016, stunting rates in Uganda have continued to decline, but at a slow pace, to a prevalence of 28.9 percent (Global Nutrition Report, 2020). However, these figures are still unacceptably high. According to UNICEF1, malnutrition threatens to destroy a generation of children in Uganda.
Fort Portal Food Systems Lab
Food Systems Labs are multi-actor platforms that address pressing issues in local food systems. The main goal of the Fort Port Food System Lab is to influence sustainable, resilient and equitable production and consumption of diverse, nutritious and safe food for all. We employ the Coalition of the willing approach to reach out to community members with sensitization messages on nutritional behavioural change in order to increase the understanding about better functioning food systems leading to better nutritional outcomes.
The lab operates under four major pillars, popularly known as “work packages”.
- Food consumption and healthy nutrition: This package is dedicated to improving nutrition and health through transformation of consumption patterns towards sustainable healthy diets.
- Sustainable food production: This is aimed strengthening sustainability, resilience and diversity of food production systems to produce healthy and nutritious food.
- Post–harvest technology and food safety: Aimed at developing innovative post-harvest technologies to improve food safety and reduce food waste.
- Transformational impact, scalability and exploitation: Aimed at promoting pathways for exploitation and scalability to maximize sustainable impact.
KRC Nutrition Clinic
Under work packages 1 and 4 of the Fort Portal Food Systems Lab, KRC Uganda operates a Nutrition Clinic in order to enhance nutrition promotion, nutrition service delivery and to support community nutrition surveillance for timely and active malnutrition case identification, management and referral. Establishment of the clinic is a tailored response to the dire malnutrition and stunting rates in the Tooro Sub Region.
The Services offered at KRC Nutrition Clinic include;
- Nutritional assessment
- Malnutrition Case management and referral
- Diet therapy (disease management using specialized diets)
- Physical exercise planning
- Community sensitizations
- Integrated community health and nutrition sensitisation/ education outreaches
- Nutrition consultancies
- Capacity building of community structures on nutrition
- Institutional nutrition program development
- Nutrition advocacy.
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