The UNICEF Nutrition Strategy 2020–2030: Nutrition, for Every Child outlines UNICEF’s strategic intent to support national governments and partners in upholding children’s right to nutrition, and ending malnutrition in all its forms over the next decade.
Today, at least one in three children is not growing well because of malnutrition. New forces are driving the nutrition situation of children – globalization, urbanization, inequities, environmental crises, health epidemics and humanitarian emergencies – posing critical challenges to feeding children sustainably today and for generations to come.
Yet there is reason to be optimistic.
Since 2000, the proportion of children under 5 suffering from stunting has declined by one third and the number of children with stunting has dropped by 55 million. While there are important challenges ahead, this achievement makes clear that a future without malnutrition is within our grasp.
To drive progress over the next decade, the Nutrition Strategy recommits to rights-based and context-specific programmes that are informed by evidence and innovation.
We expand our traditional focus on early childhood to middle childhood and adolescence. We renew our focus on preventing stunting, wasting and micronutrient deficiencies, while increasingly responding to the challenge of childhood overweight and obesity.
And we propose a systems approach to nutrition that strengthens the ability of five key systems – food, health, water and sanitation, education, and social protection – to deliver diets, services and practices that support adequate maternal and child nutrition.
The strategy builds on UNICEF’s past strategic guidance and programme experience, while embracing six strategic shifts to respond to the evolving face of child malnutrition:
- An explicit focus on addressing child malnutrition in all its forms
- A comprehensive life cycle approach to nutrition programming
- A deliberate emphasis on improving diets, services and practices
- A systems approach to maternal and child nutrition
- A greater attention to private sector engagement
- A universal vision and agenda relevant to all countries