In recent years, the UK Government has played an important role in raising the global focus on malnutrition, a development challenge that leads to millions of unnecessary child deaths and wasted human potential, but one that is entirely preventable.
There’s a serious risk that progress in tackling malnutrition will falter, and there is much more to be done. Around 3 million children still die each year from malnutrition, and over 200 million children are deprived of achieving their true potential. Bill and Melinda Gates have rightly said that ‘nutrition remains the single biggest missed opportunity in health’. Despite a growing body of evidence on solutions, nutrition is severely underfunded.
The Department for International Development (DFID) continues to support action on malnutrition, working with other international donors to set out a roadmap for securing further financial and policy commitments. With potential opportunities to show leadership at international events in 2017, now is a good time for the UK Government to turn its support into concrete action by announcing new resources for nutrition, and encouraging others to follow suit.
Please write to the Secretary of State for International Development, Rt. Hon. Priti Patel MP, commending her support for nutrition, and calling for an ambitious announcement including financial commitments to tackle malnutrition.