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UNICEF supports nutrition mainstreaming at sub-national level

Dhaka, Tuesday, 28 January 2014: UNICEF has recruited an initial group of nine District Nutrition Support Officers (DNSOs) to facilitate and accelerate mainstreaming of nutrition in Bangladesh at district level and below.

The optimal scale up in effective coverage of evidence-based nutrition interventions will ensure measurable and tangible results for children, women and their families.

The initial group of DSNOs will work in Barguna, Dhaka, Kishorganj, Bagerhat, Patuakhali, Rangpur, Netrokona, Cox’s Bazar and Kurigram districts. 

As mainstreaming nutrition requires substantial support and investment in human capital, UNICEF will soon commission an additional 16 nutrition officers throughout the country, this was revealed this week during the start of UNICEF’s support to DSNOs and the presentation of certificates on completion of their training.

This initiative is supported by DFATD/Canada, European Commission and USAID, while UNICEF is working alongside the government to implement this initiative.

“In the health sector, we are now beginning to see progress in the mainstreaming of nutrition, particularly with actions known as Direct Nutrition Interventions. We know what needs to be done, but we now need to focus on quality and ensuring that all women and children are reached with services and information,” says UNICEF Representative, Pascal Villeneuve.

For now, the nine new DNSOs, together with UNICEF’s existing six nutrition officers placed in each of its zonal offices have completed two intensive training courses in partnership with two prominent academic institutions. 

Technical training was developed in collaboration with the Institute of Nutrition and Food Science, Dhaka University.  It is designed to build the technical expertise required to ensure mainstreaming of nutrition in health, agriculture, education and social protection.
 
Mainstreaming Nutrition in Public Health & Relevant Sector was developed in collaboration with James P. Grant School of Public Health at BRAC Institute of Global Health. It is designed to develop skills to support effective planning, coordination and monitoring for mainstreaming nutrition and improving effective coverage of direct and nutrition-sensitive interventions in key sectors.

At the national level and through its six zonal offices, UNICEF supports the planning, budgeting, procurement and coordination required for rapid scaling up of a full package of direct nutrition interventions throughout the country. 

The proposed technical support will allow both the National Nutrition Services (Ministry of Health and Family Welfare) and UNICEF to expand its sub-national support and is expected to lead to increased resource allocation to fund existing plans and targets. 

-Ends-

For more information, please contact:

UNICEF Bangladesh: Iftikhar Ahmed Chowdhury, Communication Officer, Communication, Advocacy and Partnership Section, Mobile: +880 1711 595045, Tel: +880 2 9336701 ext. 7028, email: achowdhury@unicef.org

About UNICEF: UNICEF is on the ground in over 150 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence.  The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS.  UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.

For more information please visit: www.unicef.org.bd

 

 

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