Sorong, SW Papua (ANTARA) - The Ministry of Home Affairs reminded Southwest Papua Province to continue to bolster collaboration in order to accelerate stunting reductions in the province.

The ministry's Director General of Regional Development Guidance, Restuardy Daud, explained here on Sunday that an important thing that needs to be implemented in stunting reduction efforts is strengthening the collaboration of all parties for jointly contributing to stunting reduction acceleration programs.

"This is essential to do by unifying thoughts and concepts in different main tasks and functions so that efforts to reduce stunting can be carried out jointly," he said.

The goal, he continued, is to ensure the eight convergence actions against stunting can be realized maximally at the provincial level as well as district and city levels.

"So far, out of six provinces in Papua, Southwest Papua's stunting handling is very good," he remarked.

He admitted that every province has different achievements in stunt handling.

He noted that the cultural and geographical aspects between one region and another in Papua become a challenge in stunt handling.

For stunting handling, the Health Office of Southwest Papua Province has allocated a budget of Rp20 billion (around US$1.28 million) sourced from the province's regional budget (APBD).

Head of the Southwest Papua Health Office, Netty Howai, explained that the budget is a concrete effort by the provincial government to implement strategic programs to reduce stunting rates in the province.

She explained that one of the forms of realization of the stunting reduction priority programs is that her office has distributed complementary foods for babies, under-five children, and pregnant women in five districts and one city.

Furthermore, the other effort that the office has made is launching the nutrition kitchen program in all districts and cities in November 2023.

Howai also informed me that Southwest Papua's stunting prevalence in October 2023 stood at 12 percent, a decline from 19.9 percent on July 20, 2023.

Stunting reduction is a priority program of the Indonesian government, which is aiming to bring down stunting prevalence to 14 percent by 2024.

Indonesia's stunting prevalence declined by 2.8 percentage points to 21.6 percent in 2022 from 24.4 percent in 2021, as per the 2022 Indonesian Nutritional Status Survey (SSGI).

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Translator: Yuvensius Lasa, Raka Adji
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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