NAIROBI, 26 August 2013 – The UN System Network for Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) is holding its first meeting in Africa from 26-28 August in Nairobi, Kenya, bringing together experts from various UN agencies working on the continent to drive forward the fight against undernutrition.
The consortium, Leveraging Agriculture for Nutrition in South Asia (LANSA) has secured funding to implement its ambitious new research programme. The research will examine and make recommendations on how agriculture and food-related interventions can be better designed to improve nutrition, with particular focus on children and adolescent girls. The six year (2013 - 2018) research programme has been made possible by a grant from the UK government.
Horn of Africa Drought
Much of the Horn of Africa continuous to face the largest humanitarian crisis in the world today, in terms of scale and and severity, with more than 13 million people being severely affected and still in urgent need of humanitarian aid: in Somalia (4 million), Kenya (4.3 million), Ethiopia (4.8 million) and Djibouti (about 200 000)(OCHA, 11/12/11).
This issue covers the period from November 2010 to May 2011. Its special focus is on climate change and climate variability and how these affect food and nutrition security and aggravate the problems of hunger and undernutrition. This edition aims to provide some basic understanding of the ways that climate change exacerbates humanitarian crises and to contribute to the debate about how to face this challenge.
Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons - In the past year, the movement of people within their country, and from one country or even continent to another has continued to rise. According to UNHCR (06/10) there were over 43 million forcibly displaced people worldwide at the end of 2009, which is the highest number since the mid-1990s.
This Sixth report on the world nutrition situation by the United Nations System Standing Committee on Nutrition (UNSCN) is part of a series of UNSCN publications reporting on trends in nutrition. By analyzing trends in vitamin A deficiency, iodine deficiency disorders, anaemia, underweight and stunting, as well as low birth weight, the report shows that progress is being made but, in some regions, not fast enough to reach the targets set for the Millennium Development Goals.
The United Nations System Standing Committee
on Nutrition (UNSCN) has produced a policy brief, entitled "Climate Change
and Nutrition Security - Message to the UNFCCC negotiators".
• Introduction: food and nutrition security in West Africa: opportunities and challenges 1
• Soaring food prices, climate change and bioenergy: new challenges for food security and nutrition 2
• Collaborating on nutrition and food security: Implications for the health and agriculture sectors 7
• Capacity development: challenges and opportunities 11
• Implications of a resilient and sustainable smallholder food production system in West Africa on food security, nutrition and health of the population 14
The discourse on the impact of climate change (CC) has been on-going for a while. The actions, however, to act decisively to avert triggering the tipping point have been few and overall rather uncoordinated. The latter is not surprising given the many different interests that predominant in different parts of the world. It's not that we lack ideas or solutions to both seriously mitigate and then prepare to adapt to climate change impact.
Infant and Young Child Feeding Practices - directly affect the nutritional status especially of children under two years of age and, ultimately, have an impact on child survival. Appropriate and timely support for infant and young child feeding (IYCF) practices in emergency situation can save life, ICYF practices have been investigated by ACF, UNICEF and UNHCR in Côte d'Ivoire, Uganda and Syria. The newly revised indicator list was applied by SC-UK in Afghanistan and in the Gaza strip of the occupied Palestinian territory.
Impact of Food Prices Rises On Malnutrition and Food Security
- International food and oil prices soared until further in 2008 and translated in varying degrees into higher domestic food prices causing food riots in over 30 countries. Even though food prices are falling on the global markets, surveillance showed that local prices have continued to increase or have remained at their inflated level in a number of vulnerable countries.
The study provides guidance to IPC practitioners on the significance and use of nutrition and mortality indicators for the classification of different food security phases. It also provides a very rich basis for further work, including in strengthening linkages between food security and nutrition analysis and in revisiting the definition and interpretation of the reference levels of various indicators for the classification of the depth of food insecurity.
Ethiopia - Drought contributes to worsening food insecurity
Over 12 million people are currently classified as food insecure in Ethiopia, with those in the Somali and Oromia regions the most affected. Compounding the problem, drought has caused significant crop and livestock losses.
Ethiopia - High levels of food insecurity persist
The 2008 meher harvest was inadequate in several regions, leaving 12.4 million people in need of food or cash assistance. Furthermore, the planting of this year's Belg crop has been delayed due to insufficient rains fueling fears of a second failed harvest. The situation is especially worrisome in the regions of SNNPR, Oromia, Tigray and Afar, where the Belg harvest provides for the majority of household food needs.
Food prices have surged in the last two
years wiping out global gains in poverty and hunger reduction achieved
over the last two decades. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
index of food prices rose by 9% in 2006, 24% in 2007 and has surged by
51% in the last 12 months. FAO forecasts that the world will spend US$1,035
billion on food imports in 2008, US$215 billion more than in 2007. This
will severely strain the budgets of low-income food-deficit countries (LIFDCs)
that will see their import bills soar by more than 40% this year.
Ethiopia- Failure of the last seasonal rains
The failure of the last seasonal rains has affected cereal and root crops as welll as livestock conditions. As a result, the number of emergency beneficiaries has increased from an estimated 2.2 million in April to 4.6 million in June 2008. The most affected areas are in SNNPR, Oromya ans Somalia regions. Deteriorating situations have also been reported in Afar and Amhara regions. Although the rains have recently improved and humanitarian interventions have been put in place, the emergency has not yet fully beem addressed.
Somalia - Situation still precarious in Somali region
Despite record 2007 meher harvest in many parts of the country, nearly 9 million people are still expected to require food or cash assistance in 2008. Eight million of those are being targeted by the GoE's Productive Safety Net Program, an assistance program for chronically food insecure people. The food security situation in the Somali region continues to be critical.
Somalia - Displacement continues amid ongoing hostilities
Intensified fighting broke out in Mogadishu on October 27th, aggravating an already precarious humanitarian situation.
Ethiopia - Worsening situation in Somali region
The situation has been causing concern in part of Somali region since the intensification in counter-insurgency operations in April 2007. Since June, a strict control on border crossing with Somalia has also been established. These have resulted in a decrease in livestock and livestock product sales, on which people from Somali region rely heavily to procure cereals and other imported items.