Childcare practices and nutritional status of children 0 - 2 years old in Makongeni estate, Thika - Kenya
MetadataShow full item record
This thesis reports on a study carried out in Peri -Urban Thika. The study aimed at establishing from the mothers of children 0 -2 years old which of their dailly activities are regarded specifically as childcare acti vi ties, and also to establish the time spent in accomplishing each activity. Some characteristics of the caregivers in this community were also determined and described. The study population consisted of mothers from the low income group who were interviwed using a structured questionnaire to obtain demographic information. The time taken performing the various childcare activities was determined and recorded using a time schedule applied for 2 day (10 hour) periods of continous observation. The mean for the two days was uRed in the analysis. Results showed that Food Preparation, Bathing, Feeding and Washing the child's clothes are regarded as the most important childcare activities. These were also observed to be the most frequently performed activities irrespective of who provided the care. Breastfeeding and holding the child though time consuming considerable amounts of time were not however regarded as 'work' by most of the mothers. The findings further indicated that time taken to perform the various childcare activites tended to vary with the child's age, birth xiii order, number of children less than 5 years in the household, mothers level of education and whether the mother had some form of emploYment. However, these statistically significant (P=0.05). findings were not Mothers in the study community emerged as the principal caregivers. However, the task of caregiving was also shared with not only other household members but with neighbours as well. The nutrition status of children in the community as determined by anthropometry was found to be fairy good with the level of wasting (0.7%) and stunting (14%) being relatively low. However, the findings indicated that comparatively, children who were stunted had less time devoted to them for breastfeeding, food preparation and feeding than those who were not. In summary, the results indicated that there is a strong emphasis on physical compared to psychosocial aspects of care, judging from the amount of time allocated to activities in the two categoreis. There is therefore need to raise the level of awareness on the importance of care for early child growth and development among mothers. Education, especially on aspects of cognitive and psychosocial care should be integreted into existing health and nutrition packages for mothers.
CitationKamau, F.M(1996). Childcare practices and nutritional status of children 0 - 2 years old in Makongeni estate, Thika - Kenya
Department of Food Science, Nutrition and Technology, University of Nairobi