UNAIR NEWS – In Indonesia, the prevalence of children under five who are stunted is the third highest in Southeast Asia region, with an average 36.4% in 2005-2017 period. One strategy to prevent this is to pay attention to the first 1000 days of life (1000 HPK).
Department of Clinical Psychology and Mental Health (PKKM), Faculty of Psychology, UNAIR, is a part of higher education institution which gives real attention and contribution to the prevention of malnutrition and stunting through its role in mental health aspects. This department conducts psychoeducation to prepare for the first 1000 days of life in terms of mental health and care carried out online. Mental health has been scientifically proven to affect pregnancy and the development of a baby from the very beginning.
The PKKM Department organizes activities aimed at prospective brides and grooms. The chief executive, Endang Retno Surjaningrum, M.App.Psych., Ph.D., said that the aim was to prepare the brides and grooms for marriage life, pregnancy after marriage, and care after birth, especially until the baby is two years old. This period requires mental health attention which will also affect mothers’ attitudes in caring and managing nutritional intake. To be effective, it is necessary to have knowledge about maternal mental health and early life before a couple started marriage life.
The training was held on Saturday, October 24, 2020 in the form of a webinar attended by around 80 people with different backgrounds. Participants of the webinar showed enthusiasm, as they asked various kinds of questions regarding childcare, early marriage, readiness for marriage and other issues.
“The long-term target of this program is to make public understand better on the role of mental health and nutrition during pregnancy and before pregnancy and after delivery. This knowledge is expected to be shared to the surrounding environment so in the future the baby can grow and develop optimally and stunting can be prevented,” said Endang.
Therefore, the program is implemented online so it can be followed by many participants. With larger scale of dissemination, it can be reached by people from various regions with various backgrounds.
The webinar of psychoeducation was carried out by Endang and a team of UNAIR psychology lecturers. The training materials cover the first 1000 days of life, mental health of pregnant / breastfeeding mothers, and the role of couples in preparing the first thousand pregnancies of life through discussions and presentations by the speakers. To expand the target coverage, psychoeducation materials were distributed to participants who had participated in the webinar activities.
“Early understanding of mental health in mothers and their role in the family, pregnancy, and the health of mothers and babies, especially in the first 1000 days of life, plays a very big role in the development of future generations. So the brides and grooms need to make preparation for family life. ” explained Endang.
Author: I Dewa Ayu Maythalia Joni