By Chukwuemeka Opara
Abakaliki – The Ebonyi office of the National Orientation Agency (NOA) has organised a review meeting on demand-creation for essential family practices to ensure that infants and young children were properly fed.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the review meeting held in Ebonyi North Senatorial Zone of the state on Wednesday.
The state’s NOA Director, Dr Emma Abba, said that the essence was to review the resolutions and action-plans on essential family practices such as basic education.
Others are infant and young child feeding, safe excreta disposal and hand washing among others.
“This is to ascertain the achievements made so far at the community level to ensure that pregnant women attend complete Anti-Natal Care (ANC) and children given full immunisation and basic education.
“It is also aimed at ensuring that infant and young children are properly fed; I commend the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) for its sustained efforts on child survival,’’ he said.
He pledged to work assiduously to extend the campaign on essential health practices to all parts of the state.
Mrs Roseline Ede, a retired Health Officer and Resource Person at the meeting, said that essential family practices would guarantee healthy living.
“Participants such as community leaders should integrate essential family practices such as ANC attendance and exclusive breastfeeding among others in their meetings.
“Any pregnant woman who fully attends ANC stands the chance of having safe delivery and reduced chances of child morbidity.
“A mother who adequately breastfeeds her child enjoys quicker recovery after childbirth with quicker expelling of the placenta and reduction of post-partum bleeding risk,’’ she said.
Mrs Priscilia Odi, Health Educator in the state’s Ministry of Health, urged the participants to prioritise the issues of child survival, development, protection and participation in their respective communities.
She said that special attention should be paid to immunisation and exclusive breastfeeding among others.
The traditional ruler of Amagu Autonomous Community of Abakaliki Local Government Area, Chief Fidelis Nwonumara, urged traditional rulers and town union leaders to ensure that issues of family health were integrated into their community meetings to save lives.
Mrs Emilia Ineh, a participant, noted that she would implement all she learnt at the programme to improve the health status and condition of her family.
“I learnt that breast milk contains an ideal balance of nutrients which infants can easily digest along with digestible enzymes that contain substances essential for the child’s optimal development,’’ she said.