How to strengthen the Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) programme in Northern Nigeria

How to strengthen the Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) programme in Northern Nigeria

This report presents findings from the operations research (OR) study which was conducted to strengthen the Infant and Young Child Feeding (ITCF) programme, in northern Nigeria .The work was a collaborative project between the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Food Basket Foundation International and Oxford Policy Management.

The prevention of under-nutrition via the IYCF programme is one of four outputs of the DFID-funded programme “Working to Improve Nutrition in Northern Nigeria” (WINNN). This output aims to prevent under-nutrition by promoting evidence-based IYCF feeding recommendations, including exclusive breastfeeding until an infant is 6 months of age, feeding a diverse diet of nutritious foods and breastmilk from 6-23 months of age, feeding a sick child and good hand-washing practices. WINNN is implemented by UNICEF, Action Against Hunger (ACF) and Save the Children International (SCI), in partnership with five state governments. SCI is responsible for its implementation in Zamfara, Kebbi and Katsina states, and ACF is responsible for its implementation in Jigawa and Yobe states. Each of the five WINNN states implements the IYCF programme in three Local Government Areas (LGAs).

The IYCF programme includes:

(1) Facility-based IYCF counselling for pregnant women and mothers with an infant less than 2 years of age, facilitated by health workers (HWs);

(2) Community-based IYCF counselling for pregnant women and mothers with an infant less than 2 years of age, facilitated by community volunteers (CVs);

(3) Community-based meetings with fathers of infants less than 2 years of age and grandmothers, facilitated by CVs.