Photo: Malawi, Concern Worldwide
- Every year, malnutrition during the 1,000 days between pregnancy and a child’s second birthday causes irreversible physical and mental stunting in one of every three children worldwide.
- 925 million people do not have enough to eat and 98 percent of them live in developing countries.
- Women make up a little over half of the world's population, but they account for over 60 percent of the world's hungry.
- One out of four children in developing countries is underweight.
The Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement was created in 2010 to reduce the number of people, especially children, affected by poor nutrition. SUN brings together over 100 organizations and governments committed to work together to fight hunger and under-nutrition. For more information visit: http://www.scalingupnutrition.org/
Every year, 3.5 million children die due to malnutrition, while millions more suffer the devastating effects of hunger and poor nutrition. Poor nutrition, particularly during the 1,000 days between a woman’s pregnancy and her child’s second birthday can lead to lower IQ, lower educational performance, weakened immune systems, and can trap children and their families in a cycle of poverty. It is during this 1,000-day window that a child’s brain and body are most susceptible to the serious, often irreversible, damage caused by malnutrition.
Concern believes that the loss and suffering caused by hunger are utterly unacceptable in our time, especially because we know that solutions exist. Ensuring that adequate nutrition in the first years of life is essential to improving health and saving the lives of millions of children.
Concern’s commitment to the fight against malnutrition is two-fold:
- Improving the food security, nutrition security and health of extremely poor people: Concern is directly implementing life-saving programs in 17 countries reaching more than 1.1 million people.
- Eliminating hunger and poverty through partnerships and advocacy: Concern is partnering with key stakeholders in the fight against malnutrition to support, encourage and mobilize robust action to scale up nutrition for mothers and children.
STRONG COMMITMENT FROM GLOBAL LEADERS
Since September 2010 when U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and then Irish Foreign Minister Micheál Martin launched the 1,000 Days: Change a Life, Change the Future Call to Action
, Concern Worldwide has been working in partnership with global stakeholders to promote targeted actions and investment to improve nutrition during the during the critical 1,000-day window between pregnancy to a child’s second birthday. In June 2011, Concern Worldwide CEO Tom Arnold and David Beckmann, President of Bread for the World, convened a follow-up global meeting of 1,000 Days and Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) stakeholders, building political commitment and energy to help solve the problem of maternal and child malnutrition.
Mr. Arnold was also appointed by the Secretary General of the United Nations, Mr. Ban Ki-Moon, in April 2012 to a high-level international working group tasked with addressing the challenges surrounding child malnutrition. He was one of 27members selected to join the Lead Group of the SUN Movement, which includes prime ministers and presidents from developing countries as well as representatives from donor countries, civil society organizations, research bodies and the United Nations. Concern is one of five civil society groups on the Lead Group.
Bringing the 1,000 Days to the Chicago NATO Summit
This year, 1,000 Days to Change the Future: Making Malnutrition History will be held on Monday, May 21 at the Chicago History Museum. This summit, hosted by 1,000 Days, along with partners including Concern Worldwide, will convene and galvanize action among global leaders to end child hunger and malnutrition in the U.S. and throughout the world.
This meeting will draw attention to the opportunities to reduce global malnutrition through effective public-private partnerships while highlighting the impressive progress to date by key partner countries in the SUN Movement.
“The stakes are enormous,” said Tom Arnold, CEO of Concern Worldwide. “Now that the international community has accumulated extensive evidence concerning the burden, consequences and effective interventions related to malnutrition, the time to act is now.”
See full press release here
The Moment Is Now: Civil Society Statement on Scaling Up Nutrition
A critical outcome of last June’s international gathering was the global declaration endorsed by 58 civil society organizations, The Moment Is Now: Civil Society Statement on Scaling Up Nutrition
, released on September 19, 2011 to coincide with the UN General Assembly meetings in New York. With the aim of strengthening collective action, the civil society signatories committed to working together to support, encourage and mobilize robust action and necessary resources to scale up nutrition. The consensus statement is being disseminated to key global stakeholders urging governments, private institutions and non-governmental organizations to join the fight against hunger.
CONCERN IN ACTION: FIGHTING HUNGER
Since our founding in 1968 in response to the famine in Biafra, Nigeria, Concern has pursued its mission to help people living in absolute poverty achieve major, sustainable improvements in their lives. Now, 44 years later, Concern remains steadfastly committed to working with the world’s poorest people to transform their lives. Hunger is often the most visible manifestation of extreme poverty, and in the midst of increasingly volatile food price increases and natural disasters, Concern is more determined than ever before to empower the poorest to effectively produce and manage their own food supplies, and to eradicate malnutrition and child hunger and their root causes.
To learn more about Concern’s work to tackle hunger, download the PDF: The Time Is Now: Improving Food Security and Nutrition for the Poorest