The Child Nutrition Fund Brief
What is the Child Nutrition Fund?
The Child Nutrition Fund (CNF) is a new financing mechanism designed to accelerate the scale-up of sustainable policies, programmes and supplies to 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 five years of age were suffering from wasting in early life. About 30 per cent of them require 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 as seen in entire regions, countries and continents. However, scaling up access to nutritious diets, essential nutrition services and basic supplies to prevent, detect and treat child wasting early cannot be achieved – as is often the case – with only short-term funding, for only the treatment of severe wasting, and only in emergencies.
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 global and national responses to protect children from wasting in early childhood are financed and implemented.