Scaling Up Nutrition Engages Liberian Legislature

House of Representatives Speaker Bhofal Chambers

Monrovia – The Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement in Liberia and the United Nations Renewed Efforts Against Child Hunger and Under-nutrition (or UN REACH) will tomorrow, Friday, hold a one-day nutrition awareness meeting with members of the House of Representatives of the 54th National Legislature. The gathering will be held under the theme “Legislature Engagement for Scaling Up Nutrition “.

The SUN Movement in Liberia and UN REACH continue to engage nutrition stakeholders from various sectors of society including government line ministries, civil society organizations, donors, INGOs and parliamentarians. The SUN Movement and REACH first parliamentarian meeting was held with House Speaker Hon. Dr. Bophal Chambers on 16 April 2019 in Monrovia. During the meeting, Speaker Chambers was briefed about the numerous challenges malnutrition poses as well as some constraints being encountered by the nutrition actors in tackling the issues. For example, the Liberia 2018 Comprehensive Food Security and Nutrition Survey (CFSNS) indicated that “Malnutrition in children less than 5 years of age remains a concern with 35.5% stunted (short for age), 15% underweight (thin for age) and 3.7% overweight (above weight considered normal) “.

In response, Speaker Chambers expressed gratitude to the SUN and REACH team – as well as UN agencies working for nutrition including the World Food Programme (WFP), UNICEF, WHO, and FAO among others – for the discussion and pledged the willing of the House of Representatives to collaborate with all stakeholders on nutrition-related concerns.

The meeting then agreed on the holding of a one-day engagement and awareness-raising session with members of the House of Representatives to place them in a better position to make informed decisions that can help promote SUN and REACH activities, end malnutrition, and eradicate stunting, leading to a healthier and happier population positively contributing to Liberia’s development agenda.

The one-day legislative engagement will primarily focus on creating awareness on nutrition, presenting and discussing the nutrition-enabling environment, and identifying Nutrition Champion to support Scaling Up Nutrition activities.

Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) is a multi-stakeholder movement to reduce hunger and under-nutrition and contribute to the realization of all the SDGs. As a SUN member country, Liberia is committed to reducing malnutrition through multi-sectoral strategies that address the immediate and underlying causes of malnutrition.

REACH bring together WFP, FAO, WHO, UNICEF, and IFAD and Resident Coordinator Office, aiming to improving multi-sectoral nutrition governance. Funded by Irish Aid, REACH is a country-led approach, addressing child under nutrition through the partnership and coordinated actions of UN agencies, civil society, donors, and the private sector, under the leadership of national governments.