Child survival, protection and development programme in Mara and Singida Regions, Tanzania: a focus on the processes of implementation.
Nyang'ali, Engelbert Engelbert.
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What can we learn from the programmes which have attempted to improve the conditions of an estimated 190 million children around the world who are chronically undernourished? It is evident from the literature that there is a dramatic increase in the risk of death amongst malnourished children, many of whom die from minor diseases which become fatal in the presence of malnutrition. Implementation of successful nutrition programmes seems to be an effective way of not only preventing the waste of human resources which are vital for development but also as an empowering process for communities to solve their own problems and ensure sustainable development. In addition, improved nutrition is viewed as a means to ensure the rights of children to life and an improved quality of life. At the same time it is regarded as a way of saving scarce resources which would have been spent on malnourished children and instead to spend the money in other sectors of the economy. A review of different nutrition related programmes revealed that there is no "magic bullet" for solving nutrition related problems in different communities. However, there are basic elements which need to be considered if successful and sustainable implementation of nutrition related programmes is desired. This exploratory study aims at increasing the understanding of some of the elements which enhanced successful implementation processes of the Child Survival, Protection and Development (CSPD) programme in two regions of Tanzania, namely Mara and Singida. In order to accomplish the study a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods were employed. Districts and villages involved in the study were randomly selected. The study revealed that there were eight main elements which enhanced implementation of the programme in the two regions. The elements included awareness, training, commitment, appropriate structures, an effective monitoring system, good leadership, adequate linkage with other programmes and positive outcomes within a reasonable time. Furthermore itwas found that no single element was enough on its own to facilitate adequate implementation ofthe programme and hence the combination of the elements was an important factor. Finally, recommendations are provided on how to incorporate the elements effectively into the implementation of the nutrition related programmes in order to ensure success and sustainability.