On August 5th, the Rio Olympics brought the world together. Nutrition leaders used the occasion to celebrate gains made against malnutrition and gear up for another round of action.
Each year, malnutrition claims the lives of almost 3 million children, robs over 2 billion people of their health and wellbeing, and costs the global economy over $3 trillion in lost productivity and health care costs. It is a massive problem that causes untold suffering.
Yet governments have historically undervalued nutrition. Only 1% of official aid money is spent on the type of nutrition-specific programs that deliver high-impact, life-saving impact.
Nutrition for Growth
The tide is, however, beginning to turn. Over the past few years, momentum to fight malnutrition has been steadily building and on August 4th, the torch was officially lit!
On the night before the opening ceremony of the Rio Summer Olympics, the Brazilian, British and Japanese governments united to host a Nutrition for Growth Olympic moment. Together, champions like Jamie Oliver, Director-General of WHO Margaret Chan, the Director-General of FAO Graziano da Silva and Kenyan athlete Tegla Loroupe kicked off the race to end malnutrition!
While this meeting demonstrates the developing political will, recent analysis shows that the world still has a long way to go before we can meet global nutrition goals. The world needs to invest an additional $7 billion a year over the next 10 years to help moms and babies everywhere reach their full potential through basic nutrition.
Sign the Petition to End Child Malnutrition
We need everybody to lend their voice and advocate for increased investments in nutrition in the critical first 1,000 days between a woman’s pregnancy and her child’s second birthday.
The Olympic athletes who helped us tell world leaders that every child deserves a fair start are competing in Rio as we speak, so we’ve enlisted a new group of advocates to carry the torch: grumpy babies. As we all know, a grumpy baby is a force to be reckoned with, and these babies are no exception. Check out the newest video we’ve released to help spread the word.
Please share this with your friends and, we can’t believe we’re saying this, help these babies make some noise! Together we can end malnutrition and truly start a #FoodRevolution
(A version of this blog was shared by the Jamie Oliver Foundation at www.jamiesfoodrevolution.org.)