UNICEF treats children with malnutrition in Aleppo

Thanks to a generous contribution from the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO)

UNICEF
woman carrying a baby
UNICEF/Syria2020/Khudr Al-Issa

24 March 2020

UNICEF treats children with malnutrition in Aleppo with support from ECHO Nine years of conflict in Syria have left half of the country’s health facilities non-functional and thousands of children and their families without sustained access to basic services, including lifesaving health care and nutrition assistance. In the war-ravaged neighbourhood of Hanano, Aleppo city, a UNICEF-supported health clinic is reaching 500 children every week with essential health and nutrition services, including lifesaving preventive and curative nutrition supplies as well as consultations and awareness raising sessions on optimal Infant and Young Children practices (IYCF) for mothers and pregnant and lactating women.

child having MUAC test
UNICEF/Syria2020/Khudr Al-Issa
One-year-old Alia had severe acute malnutrition. After being provided with therapeutic nutrition supplies at a UNICEF-supported health clinic in Hanano neighborhood, Aleppo city, she has shown much improvement. Her family frequents the clinic to ensure Alia gets the proper health care she requires. With a few more weeks to go on her treatment plan, Alia will have fully recovered and achieved her target weight gain soon.
woman carrying 2 children
UNICEF/Syria2020/Khudr Al-Issa
Alaa with her twin children Zahra and Abd, 18 months old, returning home following Zahra’s weekly malnutrition check-up at a UNICEF supported health clinic in Hanano neighborhood, Aleppo city. Zahra goes with her mother every week to receive therapeutic nutrition supplies as part of her malnutrition treatment plan.
child getting MUAC test
UNICEF/Syria2020/Khudr Al-Issa
“My body was weak because of the long years of conflict. As a result, my son was born weaker than other newborns,” says Ibrahim’s mother. Ibrahim, now one, was diagnosed with severe acute malnutrition at the age of 6 months. UNICEF’s nutrition interventions supported by ECHO, helped him recover after only six weeks of regular treatment with therapeutic nutrition supplies and his weight increased from 5.6 to 7.6 kilograms.

“My body was weak because of the long years of conflict. As a result, my son was born weaker than other newborns,”

Ibrahim’s mother
child getting MUAC test
UNICEF/Syria2020/Khudr Al-Issa
Seven-months old Janna was born with Jaundice, a medical condition causing yellowish pigmentation to the skin, tissues and body fluids. She was put in an incubator as part of her treatment. Abir was not aware of the importance of exclusive breastfeeding during the first six months of a child’s life. Hence, she relied on formula to feed Jana, helping lead to her malnutrition. Following Abir’s visit to a UNICEF-supported health clinic in Hanano neighbourhood of Aleppo city, her daughter was immediately put on a treatment plan to receive therapeutic nutrition supplies. In the clinic, Abir also received awareness sessions on Infant and Young Child Feeding practices (IYCF). A few weeks into her treatment plan, Janna has shown improvement. She will continue to receive her nutrition supplies and follow-ups at the clinic until she is fully recovered.
women gathered in a room having a session
UNICEF/Syria2020/Khudr Al-Issa
Women from Hanano neighborhood in Aleppo city, attend an awareness session on Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) at a UNICEF-supported health clinic in Hanano neighborhood. During the sessions regularly provided at the clinic, UNICEF-supported health workers raise the awareness of women about the importance of exclusive breastfeeding during the first six months of a baby’s life and appropriate complementary feeding after.
2 women talking in a clinic room
UNICEF/Syria2020/Khudr Al-Issa
“I didn’t know how to properly feed my daughter when she was a baby 17 years ago. I regret that!” Said Rahaf (left), a health volunteer at a UNICEF-supported health clinic in Hanano neighborhood, Aleppo city. After having attended several UNICEF-supported awareness sessions, Rahaf decided to dedicate her time to help raise awareness of other women about the importance of optimal Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) practices.

 Thanks to a generous contribution from the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO), UNICEF has reached over 46,500 children under the age of five with preventive and curative nutritional supplies to prevent and treat malnutrition across Syria. Around 114,000 mothers and pregnant and lactating women have also been provided with consultations and awareness sessions on Infant and Young Children practices (IYCF).