The SUN Civil Society Alliance (CSA) in El Salvador, known as the Alliance for Sovereignty and Food Security of El Salvador (NutrES), was founded in 2014 by seven NGOs.
NutrES serves as a platform for national, municipal and community-level advocacy on nutrition, drawing on the experience of its member organizations in influencing public policies, mobilization and participation at local levels. There was a particular focus on the sub-national governments – the first-line implementers in better nutrition.
Thanks to the SUN Movement Pooled Fund grant, the CSA was able to prepare a SMART SAN (National Food and Nutritional Security) Strategy with the help of an expert consultant, the SUN government focal point and a multi-sectoral working group. The strategy was designed to engage El Salvador’s parliamentarians on the issue of nutrition as they implemented the National Food and Nutritional Security Policy (SAN) and Strategic Plan.
This also ensured a common voice in advocacy when presenting the strategy to a representative of the Nutritional Food Security cabinet in the government and increased the credibility and relevance of the CSA.
The Pooled Fund grant also enabled the CSA to support other nutrition-specific activities, including a project on chronic malnutrition and overweight children under the age of 10, and another focusing on sustainable food systems.
As a result of advocacy by the CSA and cooperation agencies, the El Salvador government allocated USD 8.1 million to help improve the food security of populations affected by climatic conditions.
As a way forward, the CSA employed some of the knowledge-sharing approaches it acquired from the SUN Movement’s technical support during the grant period. For example, five schools in Ahuachapán municipality took part in food education events in which 58 boys and girls in elementary school were designated as young nutrition champions.
The CSA also led 12 forums with pregnant women, nursing mothers, grandmothers and healthcare staff from communities. These forums raised awareness among 800 people (360 men and 440 women).
Finally, the CSA helped strengthen the messaging of the 2019 national breastfeeding week under the motto “Let’s make breastfeeding possible”. This advocacy work by the CSA educated school-age children, multiple generations of men and women and developed a continuum of knowledge and support.
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