Zambia: Learning about nutrition is helping local families

Agnita Munyama, second right, one of the community health volunteers in the Lungo village demonstrating cooking techniques to local women.
Agnita Munyama, second right, one of the community health volunteers in the Lungo village demonstrating cooking techniques to local women.

“It’s all very well giving us seeds to grow new food - but what do we do with it?”

It was such a question which prompted Concern’s RAIN project to look at ways to teach local women how to grow all the new nutritional food they were growing.

Previously, the staple diet was maize, pounded down to make a porridge, or nsheema.

With a diverse range of foods now being grown in their homestead gardens, many women were unsure of how to cook the produce.

As part of the project, a number of women’s groups were set up in the villages, backed by a sterling group of community health volunteers who are helping to teach local women how to cook the new foods they are growing.

The women meet each week and learn about cooking techniques, as well as general health and wellbeing advice.

One of the community health volunteers in the Lungo village is Agnita Munyama.

The 50-year-old mother-of-10 is relishing her role.

“The success for me is when you see healthy children,” Agnita said.

She added: “It is great being able to teach women about the benefits.

“Seeing the results from this project, and seeing healthy, happy children is what makes me happy.”