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Life-threatening Child Malnutrition rates rising to alarming levels in drought-hit Somalia, may lead to Famine

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Newly displaced Somali mother Bisharo Ali Sidow, 27, gives water to her malnourished son Hassan Hussein Ali, at a camp in the Sahal area on the outskirts of Mogadishu, Somalia Saturday, April 8, 2017. Somalia's current drought is threatening half of the country's population, or about 6 million people, according to the United Nations and while aid agencies have scaled up efforts they say more support is urgently needed. (AP Photo/Farah Abdi Warsameh) VOA
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Life-threatening child malnutrition rates are rising to alarming levels in drought-hit Somalia, the international aid group Save the Children said Thursday.

A new survey found “very critical” levels of severe malnutrition in two of six districts assessed in some of the worst-affected parts of Somalia.

“We are on the brink of a massive catastrophe in Somalia with the death of three quarters of the country’s livestock, a rapid increase of children suffering severe malnutrition and the depletion of water stores in dozens of communities,” said Hassan Saadi Noor, Save the Children’s Somalia country director, who said he fears seeing “children dying in significant numbers.”

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Less than 10 percent of children in Somalia are currently registered in a nutrition program according to the study, which warns that children could start dying “in the near future” unless immediate action is taken such as a major and rapid scaling up of feeding schemes.

“Donors have stepped up in recent months, however such is the scale of this crisis that even more funding is needed to address malnutrition directly, including improving access to food and water,” said Noor. “Children must be treated for malnutrition now … Famine is a distinct possibility for Somalia. It is an absolute travesty that this is even conceivable when just six years ago this same region was hit by a famine that killed over 250,000 people.”

The drought has left 6.2 million people – more than half of the population of Somalia – in need of immediate lifesaving assistance and a further 8.3 million in Kenya and Ethiopia are also need of urgent help, he said. (VOA)

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Every Day In Madhya Pradesh 61 Children Die, Official Data Shows

This information was given by Minister for Woman and Child Development Archana Chitnis

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Every Day In Madhya Pradesh 61 Children Die, Official Data Shows
Every Day In Madhya Pradesh 61 Children Die, Official Data Shows. Pixabay

Contrary to the claims of the Madhya Pradesh government of protecting children from malnutrition and various diseases, official data shows that every day no less than 61 kids in the 0-9 age group die for the same reasons.

This information was given by Minister for Woman and Child Development Archana Chitnis in the state Assembly in response to a question by Congress MLA Ramnivas Rawat.

The Congress legislator had sought to know how many children were found under-weight and how many of them died between February and May 2018.

Chitness replied that a total of 1,183,985 children were found to be under-weight, out of which 103,083 were critically low on weight.

She further informed that during the period, 6,024 infants aged up to one year and 1,308 children between one and five years died due to various diseases.

Minister for Woman and Child Development Archana Chitnis
Minister for Woman and Child Development Archana Chitnis. Flickr

Rawat said it is a sad commentary on the state of childcare in the state.

“The state government has been making tall claims on children’s healthcare. But 7,332 children dying over a period of 120 days means 61 kids are dying every day!” he said.

The Minister said that at a review meeting on September 15, 2016, it was decided to issue a white paper on childcare in the state and a committee for the purpose had also been constituted.

baby
baby. pixabay

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But the points of reference of the committee are yet to finalised and no meeting of the panel has been held as yet. (IANS)