In 2014, The Hunger Project-Benin spearheaded a number of initiatives to help educate youth, improve nutrition, and empower women within their communities. Many young children were enrolled in preschool, while older children improved their technological skills through training workshops. Advances were made and disseminated on the detection of malnutrition in young children and new women’s clubs helped educate and empower mothers.
The Hunger Project-Benin conducted trainings and awareness-raising sessions on Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), reaching a total of 348 youth partners. These trainings contribute to personal development of youth. Trainings focused on providing participants with basic computer knowledge and tips for navigating the internet to find useful information.
The Hunger Project-Benin also facilitated the registration of 319 children, 157 of whom were girls, at the preschools of Gohomey, Gbégourou, Dékpo, Klouékanmè and Akpadanou epicenters.
Health and Nutrition
In 2014, The Hunger Project-Benin made significant strides towards reducing the prevalence of malnutrition in young children. They collaborated with the Centers for Social Promotion (CPS) in order to organize training sessions for community representatives in Avlamè, Klouékanmè and Kissamey epicenters. These training sessions sought to build capacity on testing techniques for malnutrition among infants. In these trainings, they taught how to measure a child’s mid-upper arm circumference (MUAC) in order to assess potential cases of malnutrition. The 60 partners who completed this training put their new skills to the test by conducting a surveillance exercise with the objective of identifying malnutrition cases and referring them to health centers for treatment. The testing campaign was a huge success; more than 5,000 children in 29 villages were tested. During the campaign, community representatives identified nearly 200 children who were suffering from chronic or acute malnutrition; these cases were referred to local health centers for care.
In an effort to improve women’s representation in the decision making processes and support family well-being, The Hunger Project-Benin launched the Model Mothers Club in priority epicenters, Avlamè, Bétérou and Kissamey. The Model Mothers Club serves as a vehicle for women who have been identified by their communities as role models to promote discourse in households and communities on:
The protection of rights for women and girls
Economic capacity building for women
The fight against adverse social constraints and the empowerment of women
And the improvement of health and nutrition of families
This club strengthens the actions of Women’s Empowerment Program (WEP) animators at the household level.
The Hunger Project-Benin’s work to empower women to take leadership roles in their communities proved fruitful in the area of Food Security, as seen by the fact that women outshined men in the agricultural productivity competition that took place in Avlamé and Kissamey epicenters. The competition honored the food producers who have achieved the highest levels of productivity for the targeted crop. Of the 70 competitors at Kissamey epicenter, women distinguished themselves with the highest agricultural outputs.