Tanoto Foundation and UNICEF continue partnership to reduce stunting prevalence in Indonesia
Jakarta, 28 November 2022 - Tanoto Foundation, an independent philanthropic organization with a focus on education that was founded by Sukanto Tanoto and Tinah Bingei in 1981, is committed to help Indonesian government lower the national stunting rate. This is expressed by a four-year partnership with UNICEF Indonesia under a program called “Unlocking Future Potential with Nutrition: Towards Zero Stunting in Indonesia”.
The partnership, commenced in 2021, has two phases and intends to contribute to Indonesia’s goal of reducing stunting prevalence in children. To that end, the program focuses on promoting behavioral change in nutrition.
At the end of first phase in 2021, the program produced an operating guideline for provincial governments to assist, supervise, and evaluate the performance of district governments in their social behavior change communication (SBCC).
Today, building upon phase 1, Tanoto Foundation and UNICEF continue with phase 2, namely providing SBCC assistance to Central Java and South Sulawesi Provinces for SBCC implementation in districts/municipalities under the respective provinces. This second phase is slated to run from 2022 to 2025. Tanoto Foundation provides funding support of a total of 33.5 billion rupiah for phase I and II combined.
Dr. J. Satrijo Tanudjojo, CEO Global Tanoto Foundation, believes that Tanoto Foundation’s partnership with UNICEF Indonesia will bring meaningful impacts to stunting reduction in Indonesia.
“This collaboration signifies Tanoto Foundation’s commitment to support Indonesian government in their efforts to accelerate stunting reduction. We need everyone to work hard together if we are to reduce stunting prevalence rate to 14 percent by 2024,” said Satrijo.
Phase two of the program targets to train more than 10,000 health workers on SBCC interventions for stunting reduction. Moreover, 4.5 million population that includes caregivers and pregnant and lactating mothers are the target of SBCC campaign in Central Java and South Sulawesi.
“We believe that behavior change is a key in stunting prevention. By delivering the right message that resonates with people’s needs and issues using the right media and method, we’re hopeful we can accelerate stunting response and reduction,” Satrijo said.
UNICEF Indonesia Representative Maniza Zaman echoes that confidence and asserts the importance of optimizing SBCC as part of the five strategic pillars in the National Stunting Reduction Strategy. “The first 1,000 days of life – starting from fetal development in the womb until the child is 24 months old – is the golden period to unlock a child’s full potential. Through our partnership, UNICEF and Tanoto Foundation work to encourage and support pregnant mothers, caregivers, children, and families to understand and adopt key behaviors to prevent stunting, thereby optimizing a child’s growth during the period.”
While Statistics Indonesia (BPS) data show that Indonesia has been sustaining a stable economic growth in the last decade, the country is still grappling with stunting as one of the most harmful nutrition problems.
According to the 2021 Indonesia Nutritional Status Study (SSGI), 24.4 percent or over seven million children under five are stunted, while more than two million children under five experience severe wasting.
A high rate of stunting prevalence potentially hampers the nation’s attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals and is a significant threat to national economic growth and development.
Stunting is the impaired growth and development of children under five that can potentially cause irreversible harm without immediate treatment. Stunting is caused by chronic malnutrition, recurring infection, and lack of psychosocial stimulation especially during the first 1000 Days of Life.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org.