This project represents CIDA’s contribution to the Renewed Efforts Against Child Hunger (REACH) initiative. This initiative works to build government and national capacity to effectively scale-up nutrition interventions in order to improve health and reduce mortality in mothers and children. The coordinated REACH approach ensures more effective and coherent food and nutrition assistance by supporting integrated interventions to link child undernutrition, food security, health and care in a sustainable package. REACH is a coordinating mechanism of four UN organizations working in the field of nutrition, namely, World Food Programme (WFP), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). This project is part of Canada’s Maternal, Newborn and Child Health commitment. The expected intermediate outcomes for this project include: women and children in three Sub-Saharan African countries receive effective nutrition interventions; enhanced healthy nutrition practices for mothers and children; evidence-based nutrition intervention program guidance accessed by global health practitioners and applied to nutrition programming.
Results achieved as of December 2013 include: (1) a nutrition analysis was completed in all eight countries to increase awareness of the nutrition situation and allow for the development of the best strategies and priorities for improvement; (2) priority interventions to scale up nutrition were determined in six countries; (3) nutrition action plans were finalized in five countries to address nutrition through a multi-sectoral approach; (4) costing of nutrition plans was completed in four countries to stimulate resource mobilization from both domestic and external resources; and (5) nutrition was integrated into national development strategies to ensure nutrition remains a focus for national governments.
These are contributing to increased awareness of nutrition problems and solutions, stronger national nutrition policies and programs, and increased national capacity to effectively manage and govern a multi-sectoral approach to nutrition.