Outline GFSC poster presentation:
Methods: 156 households were included. 52% of the children were female and 48% were male,with an
average age of 48.5 months. Average household income of $71.80/month. 5% of houses have electricity,
85% have dirt floors
Participant recruitment: Families participating in the VERASAN program with children 6 years and
younger who were not breastfeeding.
Child diet questionnaire: Administered to the primary caregiver. A 7-day, semi-quantitative food
frequency questionnaire, using standard food illustrations to estimate quantities.
Agriculture questionnaire: Household participation in VERASAN, agriculture methods learned and
used, quantities and types of crops planted and harvested.
Data analysis: One child from each household was randomly selected for the analysis. Diet diversity was
calculated as the number out of 12 food groups eaten in the previous 7 days. Statistical analysis used
logistic and linear regressions, nonparametric ANOVAs and contingency tables.
Results and Discussion:
Table1: top 10 foods- mainly starch sources, eggs and beans (I made this table with each
group-1yr,2yr and 5 yr in VERASAN- separate from each other but the values were similar
therefore the data was combined into this table).
-Diversity score increased with amount of different foods grown at home.
- if family grow at least 1 vit A rich food, then more likely to eat vit A rich food (esp sweet potato,
papaya and pumpkin).
-longer in program
1)more agricultural methods thought and used
2)greater amount of excess food that was sold
3)greater amount of starchy food such as rice, maize and yucca planted
-Diversity of crops planted was not changed by length of exposure to program
What is grown at home greatly affects a child’s diet diversity and vitamin A consumption.
Though groups with longer exposure to VERASAN use and learned more agricultural methods,
are more likely to sell excess produce and grow a greater diversity of grains, exposure to
VERASAN has had no effect on the diversity of crops planted. This is an area that VERASAN
can continue working on. Some of these sort of changes take time. VERASAN has had a great
impact on these communities and is still ongoing and working to improve their program and
impact. What I did:
I am a nutrition student. I helped Rachel by providing a nutritional perspective to the data that
25% of children living in the province of Verguas, Panama, suffer from some form of chronic
malnutrition. In order to reduce this epidemic, VERASAN (Project for the improvement of consumption
and availability of food in communities in the province of Veraguas) was created in 2007 by the the
government of Panama with the support of the Japan International Cooperation Agency. Agricultural
extension prgrams have been used since 800BC and aim to educate, support and help a community
The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between home agricultural production
and preschool child diet as well as to identify how family involvement in VERASAN affects household
The data used for this study was gathered by subjecting different households of 15 different
communities to a lengthy questionnaire. This questionnaire included a 7 day diet recall of children under
the age of 6 years that weren’