Nutrition Education with Microcredit Provided to Caregivers of Pre-School Children: Effect on Children’s Animal Source Food Intake
Anna Lartey; Esi Colecraft; Grace S. Marquis; Owuraku Sakyi-Dawson; Benjamin Ahunu
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Global Livestock CRSP, University of California- Davis
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Abstract: This project examined the effect of providing micro-credit with nutrition education given to caregivers of children two to five years of age. The caregivers were recruited into one of three groups i) Participants (PT; n=108) who received the intervention of micro-credit with nutrition education; ii) Non participants (NPT; n=98) who lived in the same community as the participants but did not receive the project intervention; and iii) Controls (CNT; n= 238) who lived in other communities that were not part of the intervention community and did not receive the intervention. Sociodemographic data were collected at baseline and each caregiver received four follow-up visits at four monthly intervals. At each visit dietary data were collected using a food frequency questionnaire and weighed food records. Baseline characteristics including wealth rank status did not differ significantly among groups. By the third follow up, children whose caregivers received the project’s intervention (PT) had significantly higher intakes of protein, calcium and zinc. PT children consistently had high animal source food (ASF) diversity at each follow up period compared to the NPT and CNT groups. The combination of micro-credit with nutrition education was effective in improving children’s ASF intakes among these low-resource rural communities.