SUN Movement Global Gathering brings together over 1,200 participants committed to improving nutrition
Every country in the world now faces a serious nutrition-related challenge, whether stemming from undernutrition, overweight/obesity, including non-communicable diseases. High-level representatives and over 1,200 participants from 73 countries committed to urgent actions to create a healthier, better-nourished future for all people and planet at the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement Global Gathering in Kathmandu.
For the first time, the SUN Movement is hosting its Global Gathering in South Asia. Nepal is hosting representatives from government, donors, development partners, academia, civil society, the United Nations and the business community over the next four days. The meeting will examine progress, and identify the actions and commitments required to drive faster results in countries fighting against malnutrition related crisis.
Since the launch of the SUN Movement in 2010 by the UN Secretary-General, the prevalence of stunting among the under five years children has reduced globally from 171 million (2010) to 149 million children (2018). However, overweight and obesity rates continue to increase in all regions. The most significant progress has been achieved in Asia, where the number of stunted children has decreased from 134.7 million to 81.7 million between 2000 and 2018.
“Nepal was the fifth country to join the SUN Movement on 5 May 2011 as an early riser. We have shown our commitment through our national plan and programmes, ongoing actions and programme results. To eliminate all forms of malnutrition in Nepal, the Multi-Sector Nutrition Plan (MSNP) has been initiated since 2013. The national SUN Movement in Nepal that has brought together the donors, development partners, civil society, private sectors led by Government of Nepal. We are proud to share our success and learn more from other SUN Countries on how to accelerate our progress and results,” said the Honourable Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence of Nepal, Mr. Ishwar Pokharel. “We are delighted to welcome the delegates from the SUN Movement countries, UN agencies, Donors development partners, civil society and private sectors representatives to Kathmandu. We hope to inspire them with our impact and hospitality, and in turn, be inspired to achieve even more”.
Ms. Gerda Verburg, UN Assistant Secretary-General and Coordinator of the SUN Movement said, “Good nutrition is at the heart of economic and social development of the nations and is the key to eliminating poverty as well. Nutrition guarantees the future of our children, our future workforce and our economies. Nutrition drives the achieving of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – averting malnutrition will help achieve all 17 SDGs. I am pleased to say that the SUN Movement has the growing momentum to defeat the malnutrition challenge: 61-member Countries, 4 States of India, over 3,000 civil society organisations, 600 small, medium, and large enterprises, 5 UN agencies and a coalition of international donors and foundations.”
Ms. Henrietta H. Fore, Executive Director of UNICEF and Chair of the Lead Group of the SUN Movement, said, “We are gathered in Kathmandu because we believe in shaping a world where every child’s right to adequate food and nutrition is protected and fulfilled, and where good nutrition provides the building blocks of healthy bodies, healthy minds, healthy futures and a healthy planet. We can all contribute, especially during the unparalleled windows of opportunity –the crucial first 1,000 days of life and during adolescence.”
The theme of the 2019 SUN Global Gathering is “Nourishing People and Planet Together”. Globalization, urbanisation, inequities, humanitarian crises and climate change are threatening people’s nutrition around the world. Halting this requires all actors s to collaborate and transform the world’s food systems, so that they deliver nutritious, safe, affordable and sustainable diets within planetary boundaries.
The SUN Global Gathering will be a key opportunity to announce commitments in tackling this challenge, looking toward The Tokyo Nutrition for Growth (N4G) Summit, to be held in December 2020, hosted by the Government of Japan. The Summit offers a historic opportunity to transform the way the world tackles the challenges of malnutrition and for the members of the SUN Movement to leave by example of how to eliminate malnutrition and end hunger by 2030.