VENUE: Ministry of Forestry Conference Room, Lautoka
Date: 14TH NOVEMBER 2014
Facilitators in the National Nutrition Survey Training, Western Division
Congratulations, this week’s training confirms that the 2014 National Nutrition Survey is happening in the West! We know how difficult it is to plan and organise surveys of this magnitude. It requires dedication and commitment to accomplish the tasks.
The prospect of gathering new information that will enable us to make comparisons with the past situation is exciting, because it will tell us how things have changed overtime (for the better or worse!) and how effective our intervention programmes have been. Being able to continue gathering nutrition related data every 10 years is an achievement in itself. We should be proud of this – we are the only Pacific Island country that has done this since 1983 on a regular basis.
I would like to stress the importance of the work you are about to embark on, which relates to the value of data. A lot of important decisions are based on the information that you are going out to gather, therefore, you need to put in your best effort to gather reliable information.
I am sure the training you have undergone throughout this week has provided you with the required knowledge and skills to carry out the data collection exercise and I urge you to continue to seek clarification with your coordinators on areas which you are not too sure about.
We all know that we have serious nutrition-related problems such as under-nutrition (anaemia amongst women, malnutrition amongst infants & young children) and over-nutrition (obesity). The survey findings will give us further insights into why these problems have persisted. Such information will provide guidance on the formulation of evidence- informed policies and intervention programmes.
There have been an increasing number of surveys being undertaken in Fiji which will make your work even more challenging so it is important that you prepare yourself well before visiting selected households in your survey sites. Households need to be convinced that the time they spend with you answering the many questions in the survey will benefit everyone in Fiji.
Your approach to the householders, your patience and your professionalism are important in winning their confidence to cooperate with you.
With those words, I wish to add my best wishes in the challenging work ahead of you and I have much pleasure in declaring the NNS Training close and Launch the National Nutrition Survey for the Western Division.