On 7 December 2010, the Republic of Guatemala joined the SUN Movement with a letter of commitment from the Vice Minister of Health. At the time, Guatemala’s National System for Food Security and Nutrition in Guatemala was recognized as a model for multi-sector, multi-stakeholder food and nutrition security governance in the Latin American region and political commitment to nutrition was coming from the highest possible level. In 2012, as part of his “National Agenda for Change” President Otto Perez Molina vowed to tackle malnutrition through his National Zero Hunger Pact. Under this Pact, the President had committed to reducing chronic malnutrition in children under five years of age by 10 percent before the end of his Presidential tenure. The Zero Hunger Plan had been presented to finance departments of all line ministries in an effort to secure their focused consideration when budgeting and planning results for improved nutrition.
Strategic Processes for Scaling Up Nutrition
- Bringing people together
- Coherent policy and legal framework
- Aligning programs around a Common Results Framework
- Financial tracking and resource mobilization
Guatemala has implemented a successful model of intersectoral governance for the promotion of nutrition. In 2012, the President of Guatemala secured the signing of the Zero Hunger Pact, in which different stakeholders and institutions made a commitment to reduce the prevalence of chronic child undernutrition by 10 per cent in four years, as well as to prevent and reduce mortality from acute undernutrition in children under five years of age. The Pact pools the efforts of public institutions, local authorities and various sectors: actors from the worlds of academia, politics and business, the media, voluntary services, NGOs, embassies, the United Nations, indigenous peoples, women, religious groups, farmers, syndicates and civil society. The National Council for Food Security and Nutrition (CONASAN) is the body responsible for implementing the Pact, while the Secretariat for Food Security and Nutrition (SESAN) is in charge of coordinating the actions of the different stakeholders and institutions involved in the fight against undernutrition. The CONASAN is responsible for driving actions to promote food security and nutrition (FSN) in the country’s political, economic, cultural, operational and financial arenas. CONASAN has representatives from nine ministries and three secretariats of central government, as well as the business sector and civil society. Multi-stakeholder nutrition governance structures have been set up at both departmental and municipal levels.
Guatemala has a Policy on Food Security and Nutrition (POLSAN) and a Law on the National System for Food Security and Nutrition (SINASAN) that defines the strategic institutional framework for organization and coordination by prioritizing, classifying into hierarchies, harmonizing, designing and executing actions related to FSN. There are also a Strategic Plan for Food Security and Nutrition (PESAN 2012-2016) and a National Strategy for Reducing Chronic Undernutrition (ENRDC). In order to put into practice the Zero Hunger Pact, the Zero Hunger Pact Plan was designed, which is covered by the ENRDC and the Thousand-Day Window. The operative tool of the Zero Hunger Pact Plan is the Food Security and Nutrition Operational Plan (POASAN).
The Zero Hunger Pact Plan (2012-2016) is a common results framework in Guatemala. It is the technical operational tool for executing the Zero Hunger Pact. It promotes alignment, harmonization, resource management and coordination with the private sector, civil society and national and international partners. The Plan builds on the approach proposed in the ENRDC and the Thousand-Day Window strategy, including the four objectives laid down in the Zero Hunger Pact. Its coverage and scope are comprehensive and national. In order to tackle chronic hunger, the plan focuses on 166 high-priority municipalities in 2013 and on the rest of the country in 2014 and 2015.On Friday, 25 July 2014, the results were published of the Second Monitoring Survey for the Zero Hunger Pact Plan implemented in the 166 high-priority municipalities designated by the Plan. Results showed that the prevalence of chronic undernutrition in children under five years of age had been reduced by 1.7 per cent and the prevalence of anemia in children under five had been reduced by 4.5 per cent.
Until 2011, there was no integrated, coordinated budget focusing on FSN and/or directed towards the actions of the Thousand-Day Window. In 2012, a process was initialised to develop and consolidate resources in support of FSN using the Integrated Accounting System (SICOIN) – the official system for public budget spending in Guatemala. The use of resources can now be consulted online in real time.Pursuant to the Act on Free Access to Information of SICOIN, reports written as a result of the coordinated work between the Ministry of Finance and the Secretariat for Food Security and Nutrition are available on the official webpage www.minfin.gob.gt. At present, 14 institutions are subject to specific monitoring of their spending and physical targets (goods or services that the public institution provides for the population).
Last updated: September 2014