Cultural Perceptions as Determinants of Sex-Based Inequalities in Infant and Young Child Nutrition in Eastern Zambia

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The USAID-funded Feed the Future (FTF) Zambia Mawa Project, led by Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and in partnership with Caritas Chipata (Caritas), Women for Change, Golden Valley Agricultural Research Trust (GART), and University Research Company, LLC (URC), aims to improve food and economic security for 21,500 households in Chipata and Lundazi districts in Zambia’s Eastern Province. One component of the project strategy for reaching this goal is improving household nutrition and reducing stunting among children under two.

The formative qualitative research described within this report and led by URC is one component of the overall Mawa Nutrition Operations Research project. This formative research explores behavioral and cultural factors associated with sex-based differences in undernutrition rates and provides recommendations for adapting nutrition activities to respond to these factors.

The Mawa project will use this research to adjust and tailor program implementation to ensure that all children—boys and girls— benefit equally from nutrition activities, particularly CCFLS.

The specific objectives of this qualitative research are:

  1. To understand local interpretations of sex-based inequalities in child nutrition.
  2. To identify feeding practices that could lead to sex-based inequalities in child nutrition in children two years and under.
  3. To provide recommendations to the Mawa project in order to reduce sex-based inequalities in child nutrition.
Baby looking at camera
Baby in Lundazi, Zambia (2015)
Publication Date 
February 2015
Resource Type 
Evaluation and Assessment Reports
Regions/ Countries