Journalists pledge enhanced advocacy towards ensuring healthy first 1,000 days of child’s life
Journalists drawn from Adamawa, Taraba, Gombe and Bauchi states as well as Abuja have pledged to embark on massive advocacy towards enhancing survival children during their first 1,000 days of life.
The commitment was made during a media dialogue on the first 1,000 days of a child’s life organized by UNICEF in its move to ensure children survive the most critical and challenging time of their lives.
Leading the commitment, the national vice president of Nigeria Union of Journalists, Alhassan Yahya noted that one of the critical roles of the media is agenda setting towards enhancing the lot of humanity through investigative journalism and human interest stories.
He noted that NUJ will continue to partner all relevant stakeholders to ensure that the contemporary challenges facing humanity are resolved to the barest minimum.
Yahya also thanked UNICEF for organizing the media dialogue which is a right step towards reducing child mortality in the first 1000 which is the most challenging period in the life circle of a mankind especially in developing countries like Nigeria.
Re-echoing the national vice president, a former chairman of Adamawa State council of Nigeria Union of Journalists, Umar Dankano while thanking UNICEF for the timely intervention, said, the dialogue has energized journalists to partake in the advocacy and activities to ensure the preservation of lives at that critical period.
He noted that such positive intervention by UNICEF could not have come at a better time considering the mortality rate of children within the age bracket of the first 1,000 days.
Dankano said the high rate of mortality of children within that age limit is unacceptable as such, it has become pertinent for journalists to be part of the moving train to ensure the reversal of the ugly trend.
Dankano who pledged to step down the knowledge to colleagues and other stakeholders in the health value chain promised to ensure that challenges being encountered in the first 1000 days of life, from conception to the 2nd birthday such as low turnout of women to antenatal care, immunization, incidences of malnutrition et all are reduced to the barest minimum.
During their separate presentations various resource persons drawn from the academia, UNICEF and Primary healthcare development agencies all noted that significant number of babies are lost in the first 1000 days due to various factors including low immunization, malnutrition, dearth of skilled health personnel amongst others.