The Government of Ethiopia has committed to halve by 2015, child under-five malnutrition (MDG 1) and mortality (MDG 4) which is already achieved three years ahead. This has been reflected in the Growth and Transformation Plan. Furthermore these goals are articulated within the Health Sector Development Plan IV and the National Nutrition Strategy.
In June 2013, Ethiopia launched an ambitious and revised National Nutrition Plan for Ethiopia, that seeks to transform the economic and development trajectory of millions of children and their mothers, by addressing food and nutrition insecurity in the country. It gives more emphasis on the first 1000 days, accelerated stunting reduction actions, multi-sectoral engagement in nutrition sensitive actions.
The core performance indicators and targets of the NNP to be achieved by 2105 are;
1. Reduce the prevalence of stunting from 44.4 per cent to 30 per cent
2. Reduce the prevalence of wasting from 9.7 per cent to 3 per cent
3. Reduce the prevalence of chronic under nutrition in women of reproductive age from 27 per cent to 19 per cent
UNICEF has been providing technical support towards the revision of the NNP to make its intervention more focussed on the first 1000 days of a child’s life, the lifecycle approach to addressing stunting and inter-sectoral nutrition sensitive actions. In addition, the timespan of the NNP is being extended from 2008 to 2015 to coincide with the reporting against the MDG’s.
It is envisioned that all activities supported by UNICEF will assist Ethiopia in reaching the objectives as outlined in the NNP, as well as the Millennium Development Goals of halving by 2015 children under-five malnutrition (MDG 1) and mortality (MDG 4).
In line with the Government of Ethiopia (GoE)/UNICEF country programme (2012 – 2015), the Nutrition support to the GoE includes engagement with, communities, UN agencies, NGO and development partners to respond to the needs of the women and children of Ethiopia.
UNICEF is actively working towards linking its emergency interventions to early recovery and development. It will also work to ensure that communities can build their resilience to emergency situations in line with the government’s enhanced focus on disaster risk management.