With UK aid from the UK Government, NTEAM’s TAN project provides support and assistance to SUN Movement countries to improve the nutritional status of their populations, especially women and children.
In Kenya, undernutrition, including micronutrient deficiencies, exists alongside overweight, obesity and diet-related non-communicable diseases.
Although Kenya has made substantive progress in reducing the prevalence of stunting in children under five (from 35% in 2008 to 26% in 2014), 26% of children under five are still stunted and 11% of them are underweight, while about 4% are overweight or obese.
Stunting is highest in the Coast, Eastern, and Rift Valley regions. Eleven out of 47 counties have a stunting prevalence of above 30%, a level categorized as severe. While wasting among children under five is relatively low nationally (4%), it is 14% in the Northern region.
Kenya’s neonatal mortality and children under five mortality rates also remain high.
Iron deficiency (26%) and anaemia (42.6%) are high among pregnant women in Kenya, which negatively affects the health and development of the mother and her unborn baby.
Maternal deaths make up to 15% of all deaths among women of reproductive age, equaling approximately 7,300 women dying each year.
Without scaled up and sustained efforts to address malnutrition in Kenya, the country’s long-term development will be seriously affected. Strategic planning is key to achieving good nutritional status in the country.