The International Society for Media in Public Health (ISMPH) has fingered malnutrition as one of the factors which affect the employability and earning potential of women.
The executive director of the ISMPH, Mrs. Moji Makanjuola, who pointed this out over the weekend, during the empowerment of 30 women from the Kuje area council, FCT, at the council’s secretariat said women are disproportionately affected by malnutrition, as 60 per cent of the world’s 800 million malnourished people are women.
According to her, improving women’s social and economic status within their households and the communities have a direct impact on food security and nutrition, particularly on child nutrition.
She said that the European Union (EU) funded the training and empowerment of poor and vulnerable women in the Kwali to combat the menace of child malnutrition.
Makanjuola said that the initiative, which was being supported through the Agents for Citizen-driven Transformation (ACT) Programme of the EU, in partnership with the ISMPH, would bequeath skills to earn income to about 30 women.
She added that it would also teach them about affordable nutritious food options for themselves and their families.
“Women play a critical role in ensuring that their nutritional needs and those of their children and families are met.
“Also, women are an integral part of delivering nutrition-sensitive interventions and optimising food systems to address the double burden of malnutrition.
“The burden is characterised by the co-existence of nutritional deficiencies, being underweight and overweight and obesity in low and middle-income countries (LMICs),” she said.
She added that the programme trained the women on how to produce organic fertilisers and charcoal, which they can sell to earn income.
“This training is a pilot thing that we are setting because we found out that the majority of the women whose children have malnutrition or severe malnutrition are women who are not gainfully employed.
“They are the poorest of the poor. The training that we have given is such that they can do it themselves because they are using raw materials that they don’t have to buy. We also have ready uptakers –people who can buy from them.”
The Etsu of Kwali, Alhaji Shaban Audu Nizazo III, commended the empowerment programme by the EU/ ISMPH.
Nizazo said that the empowerment aimed to improve the status of the people of Kwali, to enable the women to provide for themselves and their families.
He said that the women have been elevated socially and economically so that they can depend on themselves to participate in the country’s economy.
A mother of the three-year-old triplets all suffering from malnutrition and participants of the training, Mrs Praise Sunday, said she would now be able to lead her to live with more freedom, self-esteem and self-confidence.
Sunday, who spoke on behalf of the 30 empowered women said that they can make their own identity because empowerment comes with the respect.
While commending the organisers of the programme, she urged the Federal Government to increase women empowerment by initiating programmes for women across the country.