First MsC Students Complete A4NH-Supported Work on Food Systems for Healthier Diets in Ethiopia


by A4NH | January 13, 2020

MsC Workshop Attendees

To build capacity and engagement among young researchers in Ethiopia, the CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health's (A4NH) Food Systems for Healthier Diets (FSHD) research flagship created a grant program to provide financial and mentoring support to Masters-level students pursuing degrees related to food systems research in Ethiopia.

With the first grants administered in late 2017, the first group of five students have now completed their programs and reported on the results of their research related to diet quality and food systems:

  • Shewit Engdashet from Mekelle University conducted a study titled “Pregnant Women’s Perception of the Food Environment and Factors Associated with Their Diet Diversity in Kilteawlaelo District, Tigray, Northern Ethiopia”
  • Misgana Legesse conducted a study titled “Factors Influencing Household Dietary Consumption Patterns in Toke Kutaye District, West Shoa Zone, Oromia Regional State, Ethiopia,” as part of his work at Ambo University;
  • Bikila Amenu conducted a study titled “Minimum Dietary Diversity and Associated Factors Among Children 6 to 23 Months of Age in Ambo District, Oromia,” as part of his work at Ambo University;
  • Gudisa Merga Gadefa conducted a study titled “Dietary Diversity and Associated Factors Among Reproductive Age Women in Jeldu District, West Shoa, Central Ethiopia,” as part of his work at Ambo University; and
  • Dereje Wolde from Addis Ababa University conducted a study titled “Nutritional Quality and Consumer Preference of Vegetables Grown in Aquaponic Systems in Ethiopia”

“The MsC grants program in Ethiopia has been a critical component of our larger food systems work in the country,” noted Mestawet Gebru, Research Officer with A4NH Managing Partner Bioversity International, who manages the grant program in Ethiopia. “Supporting this next generation of researchers and thinkers builds momentum for progress towards ensuring all Ethiopians have access to a healthy diet.”

Following the success of the first round of grants, funds were secured from the Van Dam Foundation to support six students in a second round in 2018-2019. The program is now preparing for a third phase. Meanwhile, the students are moving into the next phase of their careers, working to submit their findings to journals and conferences, and taking advisory, teaching, and research positions in their universities and elsewhere.

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