LONDON, June 7, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Members of the NGO alliance InterAction have pledged to invest more than $750 million in nutrition programs over the next five years, the U.S.-based group said in a joint statement with the 1,000 Days Partnership.
The InterAction pledge will be officially announced on Saturday at the "Nutrition for Growth" summit in London, where governments, civil society, business and the research community will jointly commit to devote more resources to this urgent issue. The nutrition meeting will be held ahead of the G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 17-18. The U.K. holds the rotating G8 presidency this year.
"Malnutrition is responsible for nearly half of the deaths of children under the age of 5 and is the biggest single contributor to child mortality worldwide. The commitment of InterAction member NGOs to nutrition programs is a valuable down payment on our children's future," said InterAction President and CEO Samuel A. Worthington.
"All of the funds included in our pledge come from private sources. We hope it will encourage governments and others to commit more resources so that all children – no matter where they live – can reach their full potential. Together we can reach our goal of reducing childhood stunting by at least 20 million by 2020," Worthington added.
The pledge, which will be spent from 2013-2017, includes efforts that focus on the critical 1,000-day window between a woman's pregnancy and her child's 2nd birthday.
"Investments in nutrition save lives, improve health and drive economic growth. Focusing on the crucial 1,000-day window helps break the cycle of hunger and poverty," said Lucy Sullivan, director of 1,000 Days, which promotes greater action and investment in maternal and child nutrition.
Poor nutrition in the first few years of a child's life can stunt brain development, affect physical health and reduce future earning potential. This pledge focuses on programs that not only improve access to nutritious food but also promote breastfeeding, good nutritional practices, and provide micronutrients and therapeutic feeding.
Each dollar invested in nutrition generates as much as $138 in improved health and increased productivity, according to a panel of leading economists.
Action Against Hunger USA
Adventist Development and Relief Agency International (ADRA)
Aga Khan Foundation USA
American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee
American Jewish World Service
Bread for the World
Catholic Relief Services
Church World Service
Convoy of Hope
Food For The Poor (FFP)
Helen Keller International
INMED Partnerships for Children
Islamic Relief USA
Latter-day Saint Charities
Life for Relief and Development
Lutheran World Relief
Pan American Development Foundation
Plan International USA
Plant with Purpose
Save the Children
The Hunger Project
Trickle Up Program
InterAction is the largest alliance of U.S.-based nongovernmental international organizations, with more than 180 members working in every developing country. Visit www.interaction.org.
For more information about the 1,000 Days Partnership and the importance of the 1,000-day window, visit www.thousanddays.org.