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SUN Movement coordinator visits Chad: “Working together to strengthen nutrition”

  |   SUN Civil Society Network, SUN Country Network, SUN Donor Network, SUN Lead Group and Secretariat

Visiting Chad from 1 to 3 July 2018, UN Deputy Secretary-General and SUN Movement Coordinator Gerda Verburg, accompanied by SUN Movement Executive Committee president Shawn Baker, met with all stakeholders in the SUN Movement. Their fruitful discussions with the Representative of the Head of State, members of the Government, the president of the National Assembly, donors, the United Nations System, the Directorate of Nutrition and Food Technology, the multisectoral platform and the different SUN networks helped emphasize the importance for Chad of investing in nutrition for a prosperous future.

During her meeting with the Representative of the Head of State, his Excellency Idriss Deby Itno, one of the main recommendations was to take the issue of nutrition to the very highest level, with the President of the Republic chairing the National Nutrition and Food Council (CNNA) and the appointment of a political focal point to coordinate high-level leadership.

Gerda Verburg hailed the fact that since it joined the SUN Movement in 2013, Chad had made considerable efforts in the field of nutrition with the adoption of the National Nutrition and Food Policy (PNNA) and its Intersectoral Nutrition and Food Action Plan (PAINA). Ms Verburg also encouraged the Government to continue in this direction with the creation of a budget line dedicated to nutrition.

In addition, she highlighted the importance for Chad of moving from a management- and emergency-oriented approach to one more focused on prevention and development, to include screening and the management of acute malnutrition as essential parts of routine services. For this, it was recommended to set exclusive breastfeeding during the first six months of life as a national priority, as this is a low-cost way of achieving tangible results on children’s physical and cognitive development. Promoting good nutritional practices during the window of opportunity of the first 1000 days of life is crucial for the economic prosperity of Chad. This creates the conditions for quality education and economic development.

Gerda Verburg thanked the Chadian Government for the warmth of its welcome and particularly thanked the Health Minister, who is also vice-president of the CNNA, for ensuring the visit went well and for his ongoing advocacy for nutrition and multisectoral action.

 

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