Jan 30, 2015, 10:17 AM
An assessment of food vulnerability in urban areas was conducted in The Gambia as a result of a tripartite collaborative effort between the Permanent Interstate Committee for Drought Control in the Sahel (CILLS), the research institute for development and the national nutrition agency (NaNa).
According to the assessors the objectives of this initiative is to determine the risk of food and nutrition insecurity in urban areas, which will hopefully lead to the design and development tools for assessing and monitoring household vulnerability, vital in national early warning systems.
It is against this background, NaNa recently conducted a one-day dissemination seminar on the result of the survey conducted in the
Speaking at the ceremony, the executive director of Nana Mr. Modou C Phall told the gathering that research is part and parcel of public health adding that, this will also bring dialogue among stakeholders.
Mr. Phall said they want to have a permanent system to track and intervene before disaster happens, while commending stakeholders who participated in the survey and CILLS for findings and formation.
Presenting a report on the food vulnerability in the urban area of Banjul and Kanifing municipality, Mr. Amat Bah principal programme officer at NaNa dilated on the general characteristics of household assessed, which he said 74.1% are headed by males and 25.9% headed by female. In 33.9% of the household, the demographic dependency ration is more than 50%, i.e. there are more dependent people than active ones.
He said more than a quarter of household 28.1% have more than 10 people living in household, the economic dependency ration is very high, as in 60.6% household, more than 70% of the household members are economically dependent on bread winner. Only 3.6% of households have health insurance.
Further presenting the report, Mr. Bah revealed that the majority of household 98.9% consume food cooked at home, 1% eats ready made dishes and in 0.1% the food they consume is given to them.
He noted under less than half of households 48% have stocks of cereals, while 30.4% had no food stocks and 21.6% have stock of condiments.
On the issue of economic situation, Mr. Bah dwelled on the majority household, 70.1 have outdoor kitchens. The rest 13.9% have no demarcated palace to serve as kitchens.
The finding also revealed that a quarter (25.3%) of the households do not have radio. For the rest 54.6% had one radio and 20% had 2 or more. 25.1% of the household possessed one cell phone while two third (64.6%) had 2 or more.
He said the sources of revenue for household in the study are salary 42.7%, pension 6.5%, scholarship 12.5%, regular work 16.2%, commercial 53.4% and rent 4%.