PSI and the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) signed a Memorandum of Understanding this week in Geneva in an agreement to work together in the fight against malnutrition. Potential areas of collaboration include joint program design and delivery, new business development, and advocacy for innovative approaches to development.
Karl Hofmann (left), the President and CEO of PSI, joined Marc Van Ameringen (right) and members of GAIN senior management to officially cement the partnership. PSI particularly focuses on social marketing and behavior change communication. Their approach leverages private sector resources and utilizes private sector communication and delivery techniques.
“PSI’s approach to driving change in the field of nutrition aligns with GAIN’s own way of working,” said Marc Van Ameringen. “It makes this a natural partnership and one which can help both organizations really drive impact for nutrition.”
Activities related to the partnership are to be finalized.
A study in India founds that there are few treatment options for children with MDR TB, a problem that is growing in India. Andheri’s Kokilaben Hospital, a referral center for pediatric TB cases, says nearly three-quarters of the twenty-one children referred with TB have a multi-drug resistant form.
My name is Odette, I am 27 years old and married. We have three children, the eldest is 5 years old and the youngest is just 8 months. We live in a small hut with an outside kitchen.
I left school when I was in year 9 at primary school. We make our living from farm work and fishing.
My husband and I earn around 50,000Ar ($25USD) per month; this amount varies greatly, depending on what we earn from our harvest and fishing activities. We depend a lot on nature being both farmers and fishermen. Every year, we face a hungry period when there is no harvest. This period lasts from December to March. I have to work to support and help my husband to face the hardships of life. I work in the field or carry bricks during the day or do any kind of task that is proposed to me.
My children are my reasons to live; I invest all of myself to see them succeed in school and life. Being a mother, I make sure that my children are served foods that are easy to digest and that are not too fatty to avoid indigestion. I pay particular attention to hygiene, to the cleanliness of food and of kitchen utensils and dishes to avoid sicknesses.
By Nicole Schiegg, Former USAID Senior Advisor; Strategic Comms Consultant
This week we celebrate the one-year commemoration of the Child Survival Call to Action held in Washington, DC. Working at USAID at the time, I have a unique insight into the organization of this milestone event, and will always remember the experience fondly. Not only did the Call to Action unite and reenergize the global health and extended community towards a common goal — to end preventable child deaths — it catalyzed momentum at country-level that has been nothing short of extraordinary.
A few months before the Call to Action, USAID turned a conference room into a team room that became the center of the Agency’s activity – one wall was covered with hundreds of 5th birthday photos and the other was entirely dry eraser depicting ideas, logistics, and anything else that was the task of the day. About 6 of us virtually lived in this room, but it packed in 30 staff when we had our all-hands meetings. What inspired me about the team is that it consisted of people who had worked in development for their careers and folks who were brand new to the field. Everyone had a laser-like focus towards June 14-15 and what it represented. No one was committed more to this goal than USAID Administrator Raj Shah who frequented the team room for meetings and updates.
The Call to Action was a special and surreal experience when it finally arrived. A few days after it ended, I had to re-watch the webcast to grasp the enormity of what had transpired. Over 70 countries signed a pledge to accelerate action towards ending preventable child deaths. Private sector leaders committed to new partnerships – as did faith and civil society organizations.
Today marks the anniversary of the UN General Assembly adopting both the Declaration of the Rights of the Child (1959) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989). The two documents enshrine a global agreement to ensure that the rights of children around the world are protected. They are the result of a long process that began in 1923 with a draft set of rights set forth by Save the Children founder Eglantyne Jebb.
The number one killer of children under five often times flies under the radar. “Pneumonia can be prevented and cured. Yet, for too long it has been the leading cause of global deaths among children. We know what to do, and we have made great progress – but we must do more. We must scale-up proven solutions and ensure they reach every child in need,” said United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon marking today’s World Pneumonia Day.
An estimated 1.2 million children under the age of five die from pneumonia each year, estimates the WHO. Children can be treated with antibiotics, but as many as 30% of children with pneumonia are unable to access the antibiotics that can save their lives. Prevention of pneumonia starts at birth and includes ensuring that children are not malnourished and are immunized against pneumonia and other diseases that put them at risk. The UN Commission on Life-Saving Commodities issued a recent report estimated that the lives of over 1.5 million children can be saved over the next five years if amoxicillin is made available in a dissolvable tablet.
Last week, PSI/Kenya joined the Kenya Ministry of Public Health and Sanitation and the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) to launch a national behavior change communication campaign that will seek to educate Kenyans on Fortification and its health benefits. PSI/Kenya has worked with The Ministry of Public Health and Sanitation, The Kenya National Food Fortification Alliance (KNFFA) and partners in the design of the consumer awareness and education campaign that will teach Kenyans about the benefits of food fortification and how to identify the fortified foods by looking out for the Food Fortification Logo (attached). The fortified staples include; Maize meal, Wheat flour, Sugar and Edible oils. GAIN is providing financial and technical support to the overall Fortification program.
Mali has been all over the news lately due to political instability, violence in the north and hunger caused by a drought that is impacting countries across the Sahel. UNICEF shares a documentary that tells a different story about Mali. Recorded last year, short documents how community health workers are helping to reduce rate of child mortality in the country.
Over the years, we have taken and shared videos that focus on maternal health programs and stories. Given yesterday’s London Summit on Family Planning, we collected some of those videos and put them into a single playlist. Women are at the center of family planning. Each of the international leaders that spoke yesterday made it clear that supporting and empowering women can transform lives. Prime Minister David Cameron said it well yesterday, “Healthy, empowered women mean healthy, strong families mean healthy, strong children mean healthy strong countries.”
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