SUN Focal Point, Guatemala
SUN Focal Point Luis Enrique Monterrosso discusses progress and opportunities for the future of Guatemala through Scaling Up Nutrition.
Luis Enrique Monterroso
Guatemala signaled its commitment to join the SUN Movement on 7 December 2010.
The National System for Food Security and Nutrition in Guatemala is recognized as a model for multi-sector, multi-stakeholder food and nutrition security governance in the Latin American region. Political commitment comes 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 has 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 Pact is being operationalized through a Zero Hunger Plan 2012-2016 and coordination bodies that bring together different government ministries and external actors. The plan includes specific nutrition interventions such as the promotion of exclusive breastfeeding, increase in access to fortified food, and to health and nutrition services. It also includes programs that address the underlying causes of undernutrition such as the creation of income generation opportunities, improved water and sanitation facilities and better education for women. The Zero Hunger Plan has now 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.
The Zero Hunger Plan is also attracting support from external partners. In October at the 2012 Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting in New York, Guatemalan Government leaders, the Executive Director of the World Food Program, and representatives from the United Nations and civil society organizations came together to announce a new partnership seeking to support the Zero Hunger Plan. World Vision has since committed USD 1 million in funding while in November 2012 the Inter-American Development Bank committed USD 280,000 over two years to contribute to improving the outcomes of major government interventions in preventative nutrition in the first thousand days of life within the framework of the Zero Hunger Plan and social protection through the provision of technical assistance and analysis setting and aspects of its design and operational processes.