U.S. Joins International Community In Supporting Improved Nutrition

Photo: USAID Economic Development Office Director Jeremy Boley (r) looks on as Mission Director Patrick Diskin (l) signs a Letter of Intent to support the Zambian Government as it scales up programs to improve nutrition and combat stunting across the nation.
Photo: USAID Economic Development Office Director Jeremy Boley (r) looks on as Mission Director Patrick Diskin (l) signs a Letter of Intent to support the Zambian Government as it scales up programs to improve nutrition and combat stunting across the nation.
Photo: Chando Mapoma / USAID

USAID commits to supporting Zambia's Ministry of Health in scaling up the national nutrition program

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, April 25, 2018
Chando Mapoma
+2601 357 299

LUSAKA — The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has joined the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development, Irish AID, Swedish International Development Agency, and the European Union to support the Zambian government to fight against malnutrition. On April 24, USAID/Zambia’s Mission Director, Patrick Diskin, signed a Letter of Intent affirming the United States’ support to the Zambian Government’s First 1000 Most Critical Days Program for Scaling Up Nutrition.

“The signing of this Letter of Intent signifies USAID’s willingness to work in collaboration with other partners and the government to significantly reduce stunting in the 30 districts where Scaling Up Nutrition will be implemented,” said Mr. Diskin.

The Program, which will be implemented by several line ministries, aims to reduce chronic malnutrition, which affects more than 40% of children in Zambia. The Zambian government has coordinated a multi-sectoral support response, through The Most Critical Days Program (MCDP), which will focus on scaling up the coverage for high-impact, cost-effective nutrition interventions in 30 districts.  

USAID/Zambia will support the Program through its Scaling Up Nutrition Technical Assistance (SUN TA)  project, which will coordinate closely with the National Food and Nutrition Commission, an institution mandated to provide policy guidance on nutrition issues in Zambia.  Through SUN TA, technical assistance will be extended to the key line ministries at both the provincial and district levels, namely the Ministry of Health; Ministry of Education; Ministry of Agriculture; Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries; Ministry of Community Development and Social Services; Ministry of Water Development, Sanitation and Environmental Protection; and Ministry of Local Government and Housing.

Malnutrition is both a cause and consequence of poverty; it negatively affects all aspects of an individual’s health and development and also limits societies’ economic and social development. USAID believes that chronic malnutrition is a real problem in Zambia and will continue to partner with stakeholders to combat this issue. Additionally, USAID has recognized that the best “window of opportunity” for reducing irreversible stunting is the first 1,000 days from pregnancy to a child’s second birthday.

This observation has led USAID to focus on a goal to improve nutrition to save lives, build resilience, increase economic productivity, and advance development. To realize this vision, USAID is committed to building a world where countries sustain healthy, well-nourished populations and every child has the potential for a healthy and productive life.

Last updated: May 21, 2018

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