Approximately 40 participants from 15 different organizations came together for a national Training of Trainers (TOT) training conducted by the Tanzania Food and Nutrition Centre (TFNC), co-facilitated by Africare’s Mwanzo Bora Nutrition Program (MBNP), to scale up the project’s Social and Behavior Change Communication (SBCC) Kit—Mkoba wa Siku 1000. The kit uses peer support learning to replace negative nutrition behaviors with positive nutrition behaviors.
An estimated 2.7 million Tanzanian children under the age of five suffer from stunting, a measure of chronic malnutrition. But investments in nutrition activities by the Government of Tanzania and its partners have begun to turn the tide, with childhood stunting declining sharply in Tanzania between 2010-2014. During this period, the Mkoba wa Siku 1000, developed by MBNP in close collaboration with the TFNC, has been part of this reversal. Since the project’s inception in 2011, MBNP has contributed to significant reductions in stunting in Dodoma (56 percent to 36.5 percent); Morogoro (44 percent to 33.4 percent); and Manyara (46 percent to 36 percent). These gains have been made been possible through the use of the Mkoba wa Siku 1000.
The kit’s proven model was adopted by the Government of Tanzania as the official national tool to be used to implement positive nutrition practices and interventions in the country through the SBCC strategy. As the initial step in the scale up process, the TFNC held a six-day Training of Trainers (ToT) training at Sokoine University of Agriculture in Morogoro. Participants were trained and oriented on the Mkoba wa Siku 1000 through presentations on the importance of SBCC, types of materials in the kit, and group role play sessions to understand the key promoted behaviors address in the kit. Members also had an opportunity to visit Mvomero District in Morogoro to meet with beneficiaries of the project, who shared their success stories after adopting the positive nutrition behaviors they learned from the kit.
All participants from their respective organizations committed to implement the kit in their working areas, which include regions of Ruvuma, Simiyu, Mwanza, Kagera, Shinyanga, Kigoma, Mara, Geita, Morogoro and Mbeya. Participants in attendance represented the following organizations: CUAMM, Amref Health Tanzania, Jhpiego, Engender Health, World Vision Tanzania, PACT, Tanzania Girl Guides Association, and Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centre.
The roll out of the kit will continue with a cascading ToT training at regional and/or zonal level and conclude at district and/or community level conducted by implementing partners in conjunction with TFNC.
The Mwanzo Bora Nutrition Program (MBNP) is a seven-year project funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) as part of Feed the Future, the U.S. Government’s global hunger and food security initiative. The project’s goal is to improve the nutritional status of children and pregnant and lactating women, thereby reducing maternal anemia and childhood stunting by 20 percent in six regions in Tanzania Mainland and three districts in Zanzibar.
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