Date of Publication


Project Team

Advisor: Hendrika Maltby, Ph.D, RN, FACN. Site Mentor: Kadijah Manjelem


Purpose: Malnutrition is responsible for about one third of deaths globally among children under age five. Over 65% of these deaths, often associated with inappropriate feeding practices, occur during the first year of life and disproportionately affect those living in resource poor countries. Breastfeeding has been established as uniquely effective in providing infants with nutrients for healthy growth and development. Ugandan demographic surveys (2016) indicate less than 43% of infants age 4-5 months are breastfed.

Methods: The objective was to equip Community Health Educators (CHEs) with evidence-based practice guidelines for promoting continued exclusive breastfeeding to postpartum women. This project was implemented through the Foundation for International Medical Relief of Children (FIMRC) clinic in Bumwalukani, Uganda. WHO validated educational training video, sourced from Global Health Media, was disseminated among CHEs. Quantitative surveys evaluated the meaningfulness of intervention. Cultural barriers were assessed by qualitative interviews conducted with clinical staff members.

Results: The educational training video was disseminated to 42 health workers. Video efficacy was established by pre-and post-surveys. Results showed strong community understanding of breastfeeding and improved CHE comfort helping women breastfeed; no statistical difference was found in pre- and post-survey results. Barriers to breastfeeding included: return to work, potable water access, lack of storage for expressed breast milk, and pain.

Conclusions: Supporting women who are breastfeeding make informed decisions about lactation benefits the entire community and more broadly works toward sustainable socioeconomic development. Continued effort to seek sustainable means to promote breastfeeding initiatives has the potential to reduce global infant malnutrition.

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