The health of the population of Kazakhstan, in particular of women, requires urgent attention. The nutritional status of women and children, especially those living in economically deprived and environmentally degraded regions of Kazakhstan, is of serious concern. In Semipalatinsk and surrounding areas in east Kazakhstan, used for nuclear tests during the Soviet era, women and children tend to have low birth weights, anaemia and complications during pregnancy. This situation is compounded by low awareness of nutrition and disease prevention among the population.
This case study presents the efforts of the Kazakhstan Red Crescent Society to support the Government of Kazakhstan’s five-year programme addressing maternal and child health by implementing a ‘Safe Motherhood’ programme in Semipalatinsk.