student profile: Dr Johanna Wong


Map

Thesis work

Thesis title: Discovering the links between village poultry and maternal and child diets and nutrition in Timor-Leste

Supervisors: Brigitte BAGNOL, Heather GRIEVE, Robyn ALDERS , Mu LI

Thesis abstract:

Timor-Leste has high levels of undernutrition: stunting (low height for age) indicates chronic undernutrition and in 2013, affected 50.2% of children under 59 months of age. Anaemia, of which 50% can be attributed to iron deficiency, affects 62.5% of children between 6-59 months of age. There is limited data regarding the usual diet of people living in Timor-Leste. Animal-source foods are easily digested and absorbed, and contain biologically appropriate proteins and micronutrients for the human body. Although 87.4% of Timorese farmers who own livestock keep poultry, high burdens of disease and predation limit productivity and minimise village poultry and egg consumption. While it is likely that improved village poultry production can contribute to household food and nutrition security, to date there are no studies showing this in Timor-Leste.

The aim of this research is to investigate whether improving village poultry health leads to improvements in infant, child and maternal dietary quality and nutritional status in three pilot (vaccinating against Newcastle disease), compared with three control (not vaccinating against Newcastle disease) villages in Timor-Leste.

The objectives of the study are:
1. To describe changes which occur in village chicken numbers and community attitudes to keeping chickens as a response to Newcastle disease vaccination;
2. To evaluate concurrent changes in the dietary diversity of mothers and children as an intermediate step towards changes in nutritional status, while building a database of food consumption versus anthropometric measurements of mothers and children, and haemoglobin levels in children over six months of age, to better understand influences on nutritional status;
3. To explore local availability, understanding, concepts and knowledge of food and nutrition, including seasonal changes in food availability, documenting and describing wild food consumption, and understanding sociocultural practices that may influence the use or consumption of local chickens and eggs;
4. To review and assess the direct and indirect contributions of village chickens in nutrition-sensitive agriculture.

Selected publications

Download citations: PDF RTF Endnote

Journals

  • Alders, R., De Bruyn, J., Wingett, K., Wong, J. (2017). One Health, veterinarians and the nexus between disease and food security. Australian Veterinary Journal, 95(12), 451-453. [More Information]
  • Bagnol, B., Naysmith, S., De Bruyn, J., Wong, J., Alders, R. (2016). Effective animal health programming requires consideration of and communication with those at the human-animal interface. CAB Reviews, 11, 1-7. [More Information]
  • Alders, R., De Bruyn, J., Wingett, K., Wong, J. (2016). Veterinarians, One Health and the nexus between disease and food security. Veterinary Public Health Journal by the IVSA, 6, 22-25.

Conferences

  • Wong, J., Bagnol, B., Grieve, H., Li, M., Alders, R. (2016). Drivers behind seasonal changes in household animal-source food consumption in Timor-Leste. The 1st Agriculture, Nutrition & Health (ANH) Adademy Week and Conference (ANH 2016), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia: The Agriculture, Nutrition and Health (ANH) Academy.

2017

  • Alders, R., De Bruyn, J., Wingett, K., Wong, J. (2017). One Health, veterinarians and the nexus between disease and food security. Australian Veterinary Journal, 95(12), 451-453. [More Information]

2016

  • Wong, J., Bagnol, B., Grieve, H., Li, M., Alders, R. (2016). Drivers behind seasonal changes in household animal-source food consumption in Timor-Leste. The 1st Agriculture, Nutrition & Health (ANH) Adademy Week and Conference (ANH 2016), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia: The Agriculture, Nutrition and Health (ANH) Academy.
  • Bagnol, B., Naysmith, S., De Bruyn, J., Wong, J., Alders, R. (2016). Effective animal health programming requires consideration of and communication with those at the human-animal interface. CAB Reviews, 11, 1-7. [More Information]
  • Alders, R., De Bruyn, J., Wingett, K., Wong, J. (2016). Veterinarians, One Health and the nexus between disease and food security. Veterinary Public Health Journal by the IVSA, 6, 22-25.

Note: This profile is for a student at the University of Sydney. Views presented here are not necessarily those of the University.