Integrating local people in hunger and nutrition initiatives is key to sustainable development
Maria Jose Torres, the UN Resident Coordinator, has emphasised the significant role of community level interventions and community participation in achieving Zero Hunger and ending malnutrition in Malawi.
The comments were made at a consultative meeting on Zero Hunger and Malnutrition Strategic Review process in Nkhata Bay.
Maria Jose Torres also added that engaged local people and providing them with ownership of the solutions is critical in developing sustainable and effective solutions for overcoming hunger and malnutrition.
“People in communities know the solutions to their problems and the UN is keen to integrate those ideas in its planning in order to transform their lives and those of Malawians at large”, Ms Torres noted.
The meeting also highlighted the need for local districts to address agriculture, health and nutrition challenges through the adoption of climate smart agriculture practices.
Dr. Justin Malewezi, Vice President of the Republic of Malawi, supported the comments and also highlighted the importance of creating multidimensional interventions that integrate the local government, private sector and communities.
Dr. Malewezi also noted that stunting in Malawi is a significant concern with 33% of people affected. He questioned:
“What can we do to deal with stunting? Where are we getting it wrong in ensuring that we eat nutritious foods?”
Dr Malewezi lead the Strategic Review, the review is a government-led independent, analytical and consultation meeting which investigates the key challenges that Malawi faces in achieving Zero Hunger (Sustainable Development Goal 2).
The review produces policy recommendations for mid to long term policies to improve nutrition and food security.
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Image credit: United Nations Malawi