The small group meeting with the Honorable Members of the National Parliament was organized by Eminence on 04 March, 2013 at IPD Conference Room of National Parliament as an activity under the project ‘Reenergizing Nutrition Expanding Worldwide (RENEW)’. The objective of the meeting was to present RENEW Multimedia Presentation, which is prepared to draw attention of the relevant stakeholders on the present nutrition situation in Bangladesh, thereby, find and fill the existing gaps in policies
The small group meeting with the Honorable Members of the National Parliament was organized by Eminence on 04 March, 2013 at IPD Conference Room of National Parliament as an activity under the project ‘Reenergizing Nutrition Expanding Worldwide (RENEW)’. The objective of the meeting was to present RENEW Multimedia Presentation, which is prepared to draw attention of the relevant stakeholders on the present nutrition situation in Bangladesh, thereby, find and fill the existing gaps in policies. The Honorable Deputy Speaker, Mr. Shawkat Ali, MP was present as the chief guest and eleven other (11) Honorable Members of the Parliament graced the event. There were two participants from ICDDR,B and NNS as well along with eight other guests.
The Honorable Deputy Speaker, Mr. Shawkat Ali, MP highlighted that all rural women require more attention. He added that every stage of a girl’s life cycle is important to ensure healthy children. A well nourished mother has higher chance to give birth to a healthy baby and a well educated mother can groom her children better.
Dr. Tahmeed Ahmed, Director of Nutrition Department ICDDR, B believes that there are scopes for improvement of the nutrition status of Bangladesh if Nepal and Uganda with lower economic growth, in terms of GDP, can maintain a better nutrition status than Bangladesh does. Dr. S. M. Mustafizur Rahman, Program Manager, NNS, IPHN emphasized that all ministries, and not just Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, should work together with an integrated plan in order to protect the nation from malnutrition.
Honorable MP and Whip Ms. Sagufta Yesmin suggested several effective activities that can be undertaken in the rural areas to ensure nourished children. Mr. Md. Atiur Rahman Atik , Honorable MP, identified that children from urban areas are more vulnerable than those in rural areas as the rural children have access to fresh fruits and vegetables, which make their immune system better compared to the urban children who are deprived of fresh fruits and vegetables. Mr. Md. Monowar Hossain Chowdhury, Honorable MP agreed with Mr. Atiur Rahman Atik and added that rural children get open space as playing-ground, which helps them to meet the need for physical exercise.
Opportunities of jobs for ultra poor women or empowerment of rural women should be taken into consideration, Parliament Member, Ms. Nur Afroze Ali added as a suggestion to address the nutritional problem. Mr. Mir Showkat Ali Badsha, Honorable MP, drew attention on family planning issue and how this overcrowding population is impacting the nutritional status.
Adv. Showkat Ara Begum, Honorable MP, appealed to ensure the presence of appointed doctors in their assigned hospitals, even in the remote places, so that the rural patients can get timely required treatments. Honorable MP, Ms. Noorjahan Begum on the other hand shared the increased trend in caesarean deliveries and urged to encourage normal deliveries as caesarean deliveries make mothers weak and sick, thereby, impacting the after birth care of children from their mothers. Professor (Dr.) M.S. Akbar, the Chairman of Red Crescent Society, cited several causes of malnutrition in Bangladesh, such asÂ poverty, lack of knowledge, gender discrimination, viral infections, lack of treatment after being sick, improper care in pregnancy, lack of family education, insufficient practice of breastfeeding, unbalanced food production and so on. Sultana Bulbul and Ahmed Nazmin Sultana, the honorable members of the parliament also attended the meeting.
Professor Shah Monir Hossain, Senior Advisor (Honorary), Eminence and SeniorÂ NationalÂ Advisor FAO, moderated the meeting and Dr. Shamim Hayder Talukder , CEO of Eminence commenced the event with warm welcome note and gave an overview of the project to the honorable participants. Ms. Kakali Poddar, Assistant Coordinator, Eminence presented the multimedia presentation on “Bangladesh on the Move”, which calls for more investment in the nutrition sector to improve the nutritional status of Bangladesh as well as to scale up our economy.