03 July 2024

Regional Nutrition Situation Analysis in the Middle East and North Africa - 2024

Well-nourished children survive, grow and develop to their full potential, and well-nourished adolescents and adults are healthier, more productive and better equipped to contribute to society. In contrast, poor nutrition across the lifecycle can have devastating and often lifelong consequences on health and development – the effects of which exact a tremendous and expensive toll on individuals, families and health systems.The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region is home to a culturally and politically diverse group of low-, middle- and high-income countries, at differing stages of demographic transition and experiencing a range of development challenges and humanitarian crises. As a result, the underlying factors influencing what and how children and families eat, and the nutritional status of the population, vary widely across the region. Regular, reliable national-level data are needed to understand where progress to reduce malnutrition has been achieved, where greater policy and programme efforts are required, and what emerging issues are impacting countries in the region.UNICEF’s Regional Nutrition Situation Analysis, 2024, presents regional and country-level findings on the nutrition situation of children, adolescents, and women in the MENA region. The regional nutrition situation analysis was conducted using a mixed-methods approach. In-depth analyses were also conducted in eight countries: Djibouti, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Oman, the Sudan, the Syrian Arab Republic, and Yemen.Key FindingsWhile there has been significant progress in reducing chronic malnutrition, far too many children are still starting life at a nutritional disadvantage in the MENA region.In middle childhood and adolescence, undernutrition persists while overweight and poor dietary practices are on the rise.An alarming proportion of adult women are living with overweight and obesity, and a third suffer from anaemia.Some policies, strategies and programmes to improve nutrition are in place, but stonger government commitment, investment and capacity support are needed.More recent and reliable data are needed to understand the nutrition situation. 
02 November 2021

Girls changing the narrative

3.84 billion is the population of girls around the world, that is 3.84 billion agents of change, creativity, determination, and empowerment. Despite this number, contributing to almost half of the world’s population, girls around the world still fight for better opportunities, to achieve equality for their generation, and the future ones. Girls in…, Girl smiles at the camera from the beach Girls can be environmental activists, “Some people are still not fully aware of the consequences of polluting the seas with garbage and plastic, and how harmful it can be to the aquatic creatures, I really hope that they become mindful of that.” – Noor, 17, Girl smiles at the camera as she holds her robot Girls can be tech trailblazers, With over 16 per cent of students in Jordan lacking internet access, Sally, 20, and Hala, 15, are determined to use their digital access and digital skills to empower other young girls in their communities, helping close the digital divide, among other inequalities. “Girls can accomplish anything they want. Pursue your dreams, be consistent,…, Girl making a coaster Girls can be artists, At only 9 years old, Nagham is already using art to express herself. Handmade coasters for her grandmother are one way to show Nagham’s love for her grandmother, and her love for crafting art too. “Last time I made a coaster and gave it to my grandmother, now she always uses it under the teapot.”, Girl showing her invention to the camera Girls can be inventors , To bridge the gap between the before and after “digital transformation”, Huda enrolled in a sumo robots class supported by UNICEF, to create a better future for herself, and to support other young girls in building a better future for themselves too - equipped with digital skills and tech-power. “I've been interested in robotics for a long time,…