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Transforming Lives: The Impact of Growth Monitoring in Bangladesh

Between 2015 and 2023, child stunting decreased by nearly 9% and undernourishment has decreased from nearly 15% of the population to 11% during the same period, according to the Global Hunger Index. Yet the problem persists.

The root causes of undernutrition in Bangladesh are strongly related to the lack of rights and inclusion. The absence of effective policy implementation, resource mobilization, and financing in public health nutrition programming contributes to the undernutrition. Additionally, cultural norms such as early marriage and traditional childbirth and postpartum practices can lead to health risks during and after pregnancy. Stigma around reproductive health topics and limited access to skilled healthcare professionals restricts access to smart family planning, increasing the negative impact on maternal and child healthcare. This is where Right2Grow steps in.

Champa Mondal’s journey is a prime example of how growth monitoring is changing early childhood well-being in Bangladesh.

“My baby son weighed only 2 kilos at birth, but I didn’t understand the reason – during my pregnancy I had little knowledge about the importance of good nutrition for myself and for little children. After meeting with Right2Grow, I learned more about that. The Right2Grow trainers advised me to have my son’s growth checked.”

Champa’s son was one of over 4,000 children across Bangladesh who were carefully monitored, their growth recorded, and compiled into comprehensive growth charts through the program. Growth monitoring serves as a crucial tool in tracking children’s development, enabling early detection of potential issues. This proactive approach allows for timely support, ultimately safeguarding children’s well-being and health.

Champa’s experience with Right2Grow was a turning point in her son’s health. After her son’s growth was assessed, it became evident that he was severely malnourished. Prompt referrals and immediate care at a local clinic were facilitated, while Champa received invaluable guidance on providing balanced, healthy, and affordable meals for her son.

“My son is gaining strength and he is doing much better now. I have his growth and weight monitored regularly, and I see that he is gradually gaining weight and growing better,” Champa shares, overflowing with hope and gratitude.”

Her experience has become a beacon of inspiration for other mothers, encouraging them to prioritize growth monitoring for their children. In Bangladesh, Right2Grow isn’t just a program; it’s a community for families, equipping them with healthcare knowledge and support. Through growth monitoring, countless lives are being transformed, ensuring that every child has the opportunity to reach his or her full potential.

This story comes from The Hunger Project Nederland in Bangladesh as part of their World Hunger Day Campaign #ThrivingMothersThriving World. Please support their campain here!

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