Vera Cruz Health Centre Says Supplementary Food Supplies Needed to Reduce Child Malnutrition in Timor-Leste Featured

By Adelaide dos Santos October 25, 2023 252

DILI: The Vera Cruz Community Health Centre on Friday said it needed supplementary food for its malnutrition program to help hundreds of children in Timor-Leste meet basic nutrition levels, amid a supply shortfall.

Since January this year, regular supply of Super Cereal, a supplement-fortified food blend approved by the World Food Program as effective in treating malnutrition, has run out in Dili, Antonio da Cruz a program coordinator for Vera Cruz’s nutrition program told the Independente, warning the shortage was impacting children’s health.

The Vera Cruz Community Health Clinic provided direct treatment to 80 Timorese children suffering from malnutrition in September alone, including treating 37 children for acute malnutrition.

Cruz said the centre had requested help from Dili Municipality to replenish the city’s supply of Super Cereal, a central food supplement in its malnutrition program.

Acute malnutrition in children under five can cause irreversible damage to the brain and cognitive capacity and can put the life of the child at rise.

It is estimated that some 8.6% of children under five years of age in Timor-Leste suffer from acute malnutrition, according to the World Food Programme.

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