• Sunday, July 14, 2024
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UNICEF seeks Enugu Govt’s partnership on childcare programmes

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The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has appealed to Enugu state Government to support it’s programmes on child’s rights to enable the agency to achieve its set objectives in the state.

Ngozi Onuora, Nutrition Specialist, UNICEF Field Office Enugu, made the appeal on Sunday while speaking with newsmen at the end of a courtesy visit to the wife of Enugu State Governor, Nkechinyere Mbah.

Onuora said the visit was to familiarise with the state government and intimate it of UNICEF programmes in the state.

She said that UNICEF, advocates for provision of basic needs of the children which included shelter, food, potable water, education and healthcare.

According to her, UNICEF supports governments to invest in the basic needs of a child, the child’s rights to nutrition, the protection of the child, including his/her rights and to help the child realise his or her full potentials.

Onuora lamented that in Enugu State, 10,000 children had no access to breast milk while only 11 per cent children were initiated to breastfeeding at birth.

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Advising nursing mothers to breastfeed their children from birth to six months exclusively, Onuora explained that when a child was breastfed at birth, it helped the milk to flow well and the child to be healthy and bonded with the mother.

The nutrition officer disclosed that out of over one million children from age 0-5, 160,000 had stunted growth. and about 15 per cent were shorter than their age in Enugu State

“They don’t participate well in school, some go about on the streets ” Onuora said.

On healthcare services, she said that there was one per cent consolidated fund from the Federal Government to every state to access, stressing that if states could access the fund, it would help to address the issues being faced in the primary healthcare sector.

She announced that first week of August was World Breastfeeding Week, with the theme: “Enabling breastfeeding in a working environment.”

According to her, it is an avenue employed by the world to create awareness about breastfeeding to protect the child from infection and prevent breast and ovarian cancers.

Onuora hinted that UNICEF had a programme for children which started in 2023 and would end in 2027.

“UNICEF will be supporting the government to approve the need to invest in the basic management of the child survival and development,” she added.