|Guidelines for Training Community Health Workers in Nutrition (WHO, 1986, 121 pages)|
After its publication in 1981, the first edition of this book was field-tested in a number of training centres for community health workers in developing countries. This second edition has been prepared by Dr K. Bagchi on the basis of this experience. In addition, many trainers from both developed and developing countries who used the first edition sent in suggestions for improvement independently, and this edition also includes their recommendations. The World Health Organization is grateful to all of them.
The first part of this book consists of three chapters that should be read by all trainers. The first introduces the guidelines; the second deals with teaching skills, and is intended to help trainers teach better; those who are not formally trained as teachers will find it useful to study the teaching methods described. The third chapter presents some basic facts about foods to help trainers focus on the basic nutritional knowledge community health workers will need in order to work effectively.
The second part of the book contains the training modules. Each module deals with one topic and describes specific tasks related to it. The modules in this edition are essentially the same as those in the previous edition, though some of them have been modified considerably. In most cases, the training content has been made shorter. The modules on nutrition and diarrhoea and nutrition and infections in the previous edition have been condensed into one module in this edition. The last module is new and contains useful practical information on how to apply all the knowledge learnt during training to the nutritional problems in the real-life community situation.
This book should be used as a model, and national trainers must adapt it to suit local needs by introducing locally relevant examples of nutritional problems and exercises. (A recent WHO publication, Nutrition learning packages, describes useful training activities and contains material for adaptation.) This has already been done with the previous edition, which now exists in several languages including Arabic, Burmese, French, Hindi, Malay, Spanish, and Thai. We hope that this revised edition will prove even more useful than the first.
Dr Alberto Pradilla
Chief, Nutrition, WHO, Geneva