This update comes on the heels of intentional global conversations on integrating nutrition action into universal health coverage, making the financing landscape work better for health and nutrition service delivery, and scaling up promising evidence and tools to combat wasting in children.
It also comes at a time when the 2019 Joint Estimates of Child Malnutrition, recently released by UNICEF, WHO and the World Bank, show that malnutrition rates remain alarmingly high, with wasting affecting 49.5 million children worldwide.
The efforts and progress for wasting may seem stagnant. After all, the prevalence of wasting among children under the age of five has barely budged over the years. However, there is building momentum to strengthen systems, improve prevention and treatment services, and catalyse powerful partnerships and policy moments that are intended to transform the state of wasting, and support a vision of ending all forms of malnutrition.
It is our time to get it right for the 49.5 million children affected by wasting, and scale up prevention and treatment services. No Wasted Lives Coalition members, domestic leaders, and partners continue to step up in bold and deliberate ways, and we envision a movement where many more join us.
In that vein, I am pleased to share two recent efforts to broaden opportunities for engagement. These efforts support the priority of ensuring that the actions and outputs driven by the No Wasted Lives Coalition are inclusive, participatory and representative of the needs of communities and those on the front lines.
In March, we co-launched the Wasting Advocacy Task Team, comprised of advocacy leads at organisations around the globe, who are working to make wasting a public health and development priority. Over the coming months we will update you on key dates and targets for our advocacy work, and how this work feeds into major global, regional and national priorities and efforts. To find out more about the task team, the goals, and how to get involved, visit the Wasting Advocacy Task Team page on the website.
The Coalition is growing, and our voice is starting to be heard. Nevertheless, we need everyone on board to drive change. Our new Take Action pages on our website feature more information on how you can get involved. From individuals signing our petition declaring: “I stand for no wasted lives”, and learning of actions that they can lead at community level, to organisations joining the No Wasted Lives Coalition Partner Group and sharing broader global and national actions they are ready and willing to drive, there are so many ways to play a part. While much remains to be accomplished, each step puts us closer to ending childhood wasting in our lifetime.
If you have any questions or suggestions we would love to hear from you. Get in touch with the No Wasted Lives Secretariat on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your leadership, voice and commitment.