Kenya AIDS NGOs Consortium (KANCO) has trained journalists in Kajiado on creating Advocacy on Early Child Development (ECD).
Speaking during the training, KANCO’s ECD Programme manager, Stephen Ikonya said that there is need for the media to sensitise communities to increase health seeking behaviour.
“Cases of disability and delayed milestones especially in the urban areas of Kajiado are on the rise. This can be avoided if the community is sensitised on the importance of visiting the health facilities every month for monitoring,” said Ikonya
Ikonya noted that trained Journalists will help in the ECD Advocacy since they will give the right and correct information to the community hence helping in creating demand and utilisation of nurturing care for ECD services therefore reducing mortality and mobility related deaths.
Kajiado County Deputy Director for Preventive and Promotive Health, Dr. Lydia Kilowua, reiterated that the media plays a key role in dissemination of information to the general public.
“There is need for the right information to be passed to the general public to clear the myths and misconceptions,” said Kilowua.
Kilowua cited that 89% of Kajiado citizens are fully aware of the Covid 19 vaccination but only 29.9% are fully vaccinated due to the myths surrounding the vaccine.
Kajiado County Health Director, Ezekiel Kapkoni added that one of the causes for malnutrition in children is lack of the relevant information by the mothers and caregivers.
“In some cases, it is not that there is no enough food for the child but correct information on how the child should be fed is lacking. The media should therefore help in developing nutrition messages at community level which can be used to empower communities,” said Kapkoni
The journalists were also urged to own ECD responsibility in their daily engagements as they gather information from the community.
Early Childhood Development comprises of Nutrition, Health, Responsive Caregiving, Child Protection and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene.
By Diana Meneto