Development and feasibility of a community-partnered nutrition intervention targeting rural migrant communities in the Dominican Republic

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Abstract

Objective:

Research on health initiatives for rural batey communities in the Dominican Republic is needed.

Design and Sample:

This study utilized a pretest-posttest design to examine the feasibility and acceptability of a nutritional intervention targeting rural migrant sugarcane families. Participants (N = 310) were primarily female (61%) and ranged in age from 13 to 64 years (M = 25.9; SD = 10.4). A convenience sample was recruited from six rural bateyes in the southern region of the Dominican Republic.

Intervention:

The intervention was developed for the target population in partnership with a grass-roots organization. The intervention consisted of a short video in the participant's preferred language (Spanish or Creole) describing the importance of consuming a diverse diet. Participants then completed an interactive meal-planning activity to enhance skills learned in the video. The main outcome variable was knowledge and a secondary outcome was participants’ performance on the interactive activity.

Results:

Results showed that the intervention was well received by the target population and participants demonstrated a significant increase in nutrition knowledge (p < .001). Higher postintervention knowledge scores were positively correlated with higher activity skills scores.

Conclusion:

This novel intervention may have promise as a practical program to enhance the nutritional status of a vulnerable population of migrant sugarcane workers.

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