Dear President Biden,
We, the undersigned organizations, write to thank you for continuing your Administration’s support for global food security and nutrition at the recent UN Food Systems Summit. We appreciate that your Administration has acknowledged the skyrocketing rates of global hunger and malnutrition and hope that you will prioritize progress and focus on impact in this year of action on nutrition, culminating in a bold pledge of increasing resources to $1 billion at the Nutrition for Growth (N4G) Summit in December.
As a nutrition community, we ask that you demonstrate your commitment to helping all children have a better future by attending the N4G Summit in Tokyo. At the Summit, we urge you to pledge $1 billion for nutrition investments for FY23-25 across accounts that contribute to achieving the 2025 World Health Assembly (WHA) Nutrition Targets. This funding should include an additional $150 million a year for the Global Health-Nutrition sub-account and an additional
$100 million to be allocated across other accounts that support nutrition-sensitive programs or to support monitoring and evaluation of nutrition programs.
As always, additional funding for these important programs should not come at the expense of other life-saving humanitarian and poverty-reducing accounts. We also urge you to announce a commitment to increase transparency around nutrition funding, including a commitment to consistently use the new OECD nutrition policy marker to better track all funding supporting nutrition, and releasing on a publicly available website a detailed accounting of nutrition resources across all programs that feed into the U.S. Global Food Security Strategy.
At the N4G Summit, we ask that your Administration commit to align resources to meet the WHA 2025 Nutrition Targets with a focus on U.S. investments that contribute to increased coverage of key, evidence-based interventions, such as, vitamin A supplementation, breastfeeding support, micronutrient supplementation, and wasting treatment and prevention. We also urge your Administration to commit to strengthen your efforts to improve nutrition in adolescence and prioritize addressing the gender-specific and age-related nutrition needs of all women, especially pregnant women and adolescent girls. We ask as well that your Administration announce a robust learning agenda in the U.S. Global Nutrition Coordination Plan 2.0 and publicly publish a report on best practices in nutrition sensitive and specific interventions across development and humanitarian programming and how U.S. investments have and will continue to contribute to advancing on the 2025 WHA Nutrition Targets.
Finally, in light of 2022 representing the ten-year anniversary of the U.S. commitment to act on the call to end preventable maternal and child deaths, we urge you to commit to hosting a high-level event renewing and strengthening this commitment globally, recognizing nutrition as critical to child and maternal survival.
As you know, rates of malnutrition caused by the confluence of the COVID-19 pandemic, rising conflict, and the effects of climate change are reaching nearly unprecedented levels. According to a recent paper published in Nature, due to the pandemic, 283,000 more children under the age of five could die over the next two years if action is not taken to curb malnutrition rates – that equates to more than 250 children dying each day. The paper also finds that 13.6 million more children could be wasted (i.e. low weight for height) and 3.6 million more stunted (i.e. low height for age) due to the effects of the pandemic. In addition to the moral tragedy of children dying and suffering from a preventable cause, the nutrition crisis we are seeing around the world has serious economic impacts as well. Productivity losses could cost $44.3 billion. But by coming together with our partners and demonstrating leadership with a strong U.S. commitment at this year’s Nutrition for Growth Summit, we will save lives and create opportunity for millions of children and families.
Thank you again for leadership and support to help vulnerable children and families around the world have the chance for a better future. We look forward to working with your Administration.
1,000 Days, an initiative of FHI Solutions
American Academy of Pediatrics
Bread for the World
Action Against Hunger
Alliance to End Hunger
Food for the Hungry
John Snow, Inc. (JSI)
National Cooperative Business Association CLUSA International
Save the Children