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Master Thesis

Household resource mobilisation capacity and pre-school childhood malnutrition: a case study of Kaloleni Division, Kilifi District

Abstract : This study set out to explore the relationship between household's capacity for resource mobilisation and children's nutritional status in Kaloleni Division, Kilifi District of the Coast Province of Kenya. Kilifi District was chosen because it had one of the highest rates of childhood malnutrition in the county. The broad objective of the study was to explore the relationship between households' resource mobilisation capacity and children's nutritional status in Kaloleni Division of Kilifi District.
The study specifically sought to explore the relationship between social and economic factors, resources mobilisation capacities, the patriarchal authority structures and children's nutritional status. The social and economic variables under investigation were educational levels, household sizes, number of dependants and household incomes. Investigations on the patriarchal authority structures focused on role performance, decision making and resource control.
Relevant literature on the nature and extent of malnutrition, resource mobilisation and allocation patterns, patriarchal authority structures and gender relations were reviewed. The study made use of the Household Production of Health Behavioural Approach (HHPH) to demonstrate how households and community resources could be utilised to improve the health status of the children. The household economic models were also used to show the different patterns of resource distribution within the household level. The data for the study were drawn from a randomly selected sample of 110 households with pre-school aged children. The data was collected using a self-administered questionnaire. Nutritional assessment was done using the weight for age (W-A) nutritional assessment. Analysis of data was done using the statistical package for social scientist (SPSS).
Analysis of data revealed that thirty five percent of the children were malnourished. The poor nutritional status of pre-school children in the district could be attributed to inter alia number of dependants, parental educational levels and household incomes. Gender relations with regard to food provision, decision making and resources control were found to influence the household resource allocation and distribution patterns and had an impact on the nutritional status of the children. Parents' knowledge of the causes and symptoms of malnutrition was limited. This lack of knowledge as highlighted by the HPPH Behavioural Approach contributes greatly to the problem of childhood malnutrition as it hampers effective prevention and treatment of the illness.
It was concluded that the existing intervention programmes fail because they do not address household internal dynamics which adversely affect the nutritional status of the children. The study recommended that parental education and in particular maternal education, nutritional education and inequalities in power relations be addressed for effective control and prevention of childhood malnutrition. Besides the provision of food and training on basic feeding habits, the government and other stakeholders should endeavour to pursue pragmatic policies that enhance the well being of the children.
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Master Thesis
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Anne Wairimu Kamau. Household resource mobilisation capacity and pre-school childhood malnutrition: a case study of Kaloleni Division, Kilifi District. Sociology. 1999. ⟨dumas-01262659⟩

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