On 22 March 2021, UN Assistant Secretary-General and SUN Movement Coordinator, Gerda Verburg, received a letter from the Government of the Republic of Ecuador, signed by the Vice President of the Republic, Her Excellency María Alejandra Muñoz, expressing the interest of the country in joining the SUN Movement.
The Government of the Republic of Ecuador is joining the SUN Movement with a great vision: a country where girls and boys have the health and nutrition necessary for their optimal social and economic growth. In December 2020, the Government of the Republic strengthened the implementation of the National Strategy for national growth without malnutrition, “Ecuador Crece sin Desnutrición”, which was approved by the President of the Republic, His Excellency Lenín Moreno Garcés, through Executive Decree No. 1211, with the objective of preventing chronic childhood malnutrition and reducing the prevalence of malnutrition in children under two, in line with the objectives set out in the 2030 Agenda.
Ecuador joining the SUN Movement represents a reiteration of its willingness to adopt a model of multi-stakeholder cooperation, multi-sectoral coordination and integrated management, as well as methodologies and good practices, through this unique initiative to eradicate malnutrition, based on the principle that everyone has the right to food and good nutrition.
Within the framework of the delegated functions, the office of the Vice President of the Republic of Ecuador works in the Zero Hunger Circle, Círculo Hambre Cero, which focuses on reducing chronic childhood malnutrition in six Cantons that have been prioritised, and coordinates actions with all sectors for the effective implementation of the National Strategy for national growth without malnutrition “Ecuador Crece sin Desnutrición”, based on four pillars: priority sets of health goods and services for mothers, children and pregnant women, monitoring for each child with regard to the provision of the obligatory services, budgeting by results, and collecting data and indices on chronic childhood malnutrition through an annual statistical operation.
Ecuador still has the second-highest level of chronic childhood malnutrition in Latin America. Statistics for the country show that there is 23% chronic childhood malnutrition in children under five, and 27.17% in children under two. In terms of poverty and food insecurity, and together with the impact of COVID-19, attention for vulnerable groups is imperative.
The SUN Movement, in its third phase, welcomes the Republic of Ecuador in joining other countries from Latin America and the rest of the world, and expresses the support of all for progressing in the promotion of nutrition at the national, regional and global level. We will support the country in this responsibility of giving continuity to public policies that favour early childhood and the eradication of chronic childhood malnutrition, so that Ecuador may grow without malnutrition, in the short, medium and long term, in order to guarantee the human right to health and a better future for the children of Ecuador.