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About The Child Nutrition Fund
The Child Nutrition Fund is fundamentally transforming the way we address child wasting
The Child Nutrition Fund is backing a coordinated global agenda, the Global Action Plan, to end child wasting. Led by UNICEF with support from the government of the United Kingdom, the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and other partners, the Child Nutrition Fund brings together governments, donors, and partners to support and incentivize country-led efforts to accelerate the scale-up of sustainable policies, programs, and supplies to prevent, detect, treat, and ultimately end child wasting.
Why do we need a Child Nutrition Fund?
Because child wasting is a tragedy. In 2022, an estimated 45 million children under 5 years of age were suffering from wasting in early life. About 30 per cent of them required therapeutic feeding and care. Wasting is one of the most critical threats to child survival, growth and development. However, despite two decades of progress in reducing child malnutrition globally, the number of children with wasting is rising due to a perfect storm of increasing inequities, conflict and climate-driven crises.
Because child wasting is preventable. When nutritious diets, essential nutrition services, and positive nutrition and care practices are available to children and women, wasting does not happen; we see this in entire regions, countries and continents where wasting does not exist. To achieve this, funding for prevention is critical. Up until now, funding has focused mostly on the treatment of severe wasting during emergencies, which is crucial for saving lives, but inadequate to prevent wasting before it starts.
Because we can and must act fast. The current global and national responses to child wasting are woefully inadequate, particularly in high-prevalence, high-mortality settings. We can and must transform how we protect children from life-threatening wasting in early life – and this transformation starts with a fundamental shift in the way that global and national responses to the problem are financed and implemented.