Objective: to contribute to a 40% reduction in stunting in African children aged under 5 by 2025
Working with Big Win Philanthropy and Aliko Dangote Foundation, the African Development Bank has unveiled a new Multi-Sectoral Nutrition Action Plan that aims at raising investments towards reducing stunting by 40% in African children aged under 5 by 2025.
Africa loses $25 billion per year in costs attributed to child morbidity and mortality, impaired cognitive, physical, and economic development caused by malnutrition. Yet these losses are almost entirely preventable.
The ambitious Action Plan is looking for additional support and commitments from governments for nutrition.
Jennifer Blanke, Vice-President, Agriculture, Human and Social Development at the African Development Bank, stressed the importance of engaging energetically and substantially with the private sector, “if we want to achieve long-lasting results.”
Through the Multi-Sectoral Nutrition Action Plan, the Bank commits to scale up the proportion of investments that are ‘nutrition-smart’ in agriculture, water, sanitation and hygiene, social and health sectors.
“In terms of human development, nutrition is as important as investments in infrastructure and power in stimulating economic growth. Big Win Philanthropy is thrilled with President Adesina’s leadership in giving greater priority to nutrition and the wider human capital investment agenda,” said Jamie Cooper, Chair and President, Big Win Philanthropy.
“By leveraging investments across five sectors, and encouraging its member countries to do the same, the African Development Bank is achieving ‘double wins’ for every dollar spent: improving lives and generating economic growth.”
Nutrition is inextricably linked to the Bank’s High 5 priorities: nutrition-smart investments could be catalytic for realizing equitable growth agenda.
Speaking at the launch, Chief Executive Officer of Dangote Foundation, Zouera Youssoufou, said, “We know we cannot do this by ourselves, so it made sense to put money at the African Development Bank to develop this nutrition strategy. We are really happy to see the strategy come together following a two-year journey.”
In 2017, more than a third of the world’s stunted children under the age of five lived in Africa with stunting rates ranging from 35.6% in East Africa to 32.1%, 29.9%, 29.1%, and 17.3% in Central Africa, West Africa, Southern Africa and Northern Africa respectively, according to the Plan, which also revealed that Africa is the only region in the world where the number of stunted children has risen in the past few years.
The Plan will focus on integrating nutrition smart interventions into projects in the Bank’s extensive agriculture pipeline. The Bank’s Feed Africa Strategy executes the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) goals of contributing to elimination of extreme hunger, malnutrition, and poverty. In addition to improved productivity, the Action Plan looks into the potential to nourish Africa, by including commodity value chains that offer broad-based nutrition value, instead of just calories.
This will include leveraging ﬂagship initiatives including Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT), the Staple Crop Processing Zones Programme, and Integrated Agro-Industrial Parks.
To realise its human and economic potential, Africa must invest in nutrition – particularly during the 1,000 days between conception and the age of two – as a crucial foundation for productivity later in life, said Oley Dibba-Wadda, the Bank’s Director Human Capital, Youth and Skills Development Department.
“The African continent has the potential to become a powerhouse of productivity in the 21st century but cannot sustain rates of economic growth and at the same time integrate its burgeoning youth population without addressing these high rates of stunting.”
The Bank is strengthening political engagement and building partnerships by enlisting Heads of State, ministers, and eminent leaders as champions to spur and build a high-level political movement and leadership for nutrition, known as the African Leaders for Nutrition (ALN), which was endorsed by the Assembly of Heads of State and Governments of the African Union (AU) at the 30th Ordinary AU Summit, held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on 31 January 2018.
African Development Bank
The ELMA Group of Foundations Commits ZAR 2 Billion to COVID-19 Response in Africa
Unjani Clinics in South Africa received their shipment of much needed personal protective equipment (PPE) for their nurses and staff, made possible with support from The ELMA South Africa Foundation (Pic credit: Unjani Clinics)
CAPE TOWN, South Africa- The ELMA Group of Foundations has announced a commitment of ZAR 2 billion to respond to COVID-19 and mitigate its impact on under-resourced and vulnerable communities in Africa. A minimum of ZAR 500 million of this commitment is for South Africa, and includes an immediate contribution by The ELMA South Africa Foundation of ZAR 250 million to The South African Solidarity Response Fund. The remaining ZAR 250 million will be used to fund a wide range of projects to mitigate the country-wide effects of COVID-19.
Bernadette Moffat, Exec. Dir.,The ELMA Philanthropies Services (Africa)(Pty) Ltd. and Chair of The ELMA South Africa Foundation, states, “ELMA has been investing in initiatives to improve the health, education, and well-being of children and the families and communities that support them since 2005. This new commitment to respond to the COVID-19 crisis demonstrates our absolute commitment to Africa and to Africa’s children.”
Commenting on the donation to the South Africa Solidarity Response Fund, Nomkhita Nqweni, CEO of the Solidarity Fund said, “We wish to extend our gratitude to The ELMA South Africa Foundation for the spirit of partnership they have displayed in working with us towards bolstering South Africa’s resilience against the COVID-19 pandemic. Collaboration and partnerships such as this are testament to the possibilities that exist when we combine efforts.”
Also Read: COVID-19 Testing: Aliko Dangote Foundation engages 54gene Laboratory
In addition to the ZAR250 million donation to the South Africa Solidarity Response Fund, ELMA is collaborating with other funders and partners on a variety of COVID-19 response initiatives across the continent. One such initiative is supporting community health workers and community care workers as they respond to the COVID-19 crisis. Ensuring that these essential workers have sufficient personal protective equipment, food, access to testing, and psycho-social support is a priority if we are to overcome COVID-19.
As such, The ELMA South Africa Foundation is collaborating with The South African Solidarity Response Fund, The Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project, Johnson and Johnson, The Horace W Goldsmith Foundation, to support an initiative led by the DG Murray Trust to provide personal protective equipment and other critical support to more than 120,000 community care workers delivering crucial health and social services across South Africa.
“The global COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented crisis for the African continent and requires a momentous response if we are to recover from the devastation it has and will cause,” adds Moffat. “We must come together in solidarity, especially those with means, so that Africa can overcome and rebuild. ELMA is proud to combine forces with other philanthropists, governments, and civil society organizations who are taking bold actions against COVID-19.”
Sahara Group Highlights Critical Role Of Intra-Africa Led Covid-19 Interventions
300-bed COVID-19 Isolation and Treatment Centre in Abuja (Credit: Sahara Group).
Lagos, Nigeria– Intra-Africa led collaboration and interventions by the private sector can help the continent bolster ongoing efforts geared towards containing the spread of COVID-19 as well as promote sustainable development across the continent, Temitope Shonubi, Executive Director, Sahara Group has said.
Speaking while taking journalists on a tour of the completed over 300-bed COVID-19 Isolation and Treatment Centre in Abuja, Shonubi said leading African businesses can leverage their membership of trade associations, the Private Sector Advisory Group platform of the United Nations and the African Influencers for Development (AI4Dev) platform of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to drive a more cohesive and effective response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Africa.
“Sahara Group, through our operations across Africa, has consistently demonstrated its support for intra-Africa led approach to promoting economic prosperity and sustainable development on the continent. Sahara Foundation, our corporate citizenship vehicle conceptualized the Abuja Isolation Centre project, partnered with the This Day media group and worked with other partners to deliver a world-class facility that will help save lives. Sahara is also supporting COVID-19 interventions across Africa and is exploring areas of further collaboration with other partners for the benefit of over 1.3 billion people that call Africa home,” he said.
Shonubi said Sahara Foundation’s concept for the project was driven by the desire to make a difference in how nations respond to the pandemic in terms of physical, mental, and socio-economic well-being of all Africans. “In addition to playing a major role in delivering the centre, Sahara and its entities have been involved in providing personal protective equipment and relief materials to help medical personnel and the vulnerable cope with the impact of the pandemic. We believe the ‘Africa for Africa’ message is one that can bring hope and succor to Africa at this time.”
According to Shonubi, who is also a member of UNDP Africa’s AI4Dev initiative, Sahara Group is also providing dry and cooked food to over one million beneficiaries, face masks, hand sanitizers and relief materials to communities where its power affiliates (Ikeja Electric, Egbin Power and First Independent Power Limited), upstream and other Sahara affiliates operate across Africa.
In Zambia, Asharami Energy Limited Company donated tens of thousands of hand-made fabric/Chitenge masks to shore up access to PPE and slow the spread of the virus. The company also publishes materials in English, Bemba, and Nyanja to facilitate the dissemination of information about the pandemic. In Kenya, Asharami Synergy Limited donated thousands of 5 litre jerrycans of hand sanitizers, whilst oxygen has been donated to hospitals in Ghana as well as Cote d’Ivoire to boost life support operations.
Sahara’s Downstream entity, Asharami Synergy, working in collaboration with other members of the Depot and Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (DAPMAN), is providing support towards the completion and equipping of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation in Abuja.
Located at the THISDAY Dome in Abuja, the centre was delivered by a coalition of partners including Sahara Foundation, THISDAY, CCECC, Arise News, The Presidency, Egbin Power, Abuja Electricity Distribution Company, Federal Capital Territory Authority, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, the Federal Ministry of Health, the African Finance Corporation, Central Bank of Nigeria through CaCovid. Wood Factory, the Regents school, the three fashion brands of Ebewele Brown, Traffic Clo and Syari Clothiers, Kenol, Mama Cass, 54 Gene and Central Park.
The Centre which will be overseen by the FCTA under the supervision of NCDC has a capacity of a minimum of 300 beds with provision for additional 8 Intensive Care Unit beds, ventilators, dialysis machines, protective equipment, and mobile facilities for testing.
Visit: Sahara Group
Nestlé provides COVID-19 relief worth over USD 3.4 million in Central and West Africa
Nestlé is also contributing masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE) to keep frontline health workers safe
ACCRA, Ghana- Nestlé is supporting more than 850,000 vulnerable people in Central and West Africa as part of a USD 3.4 million effort to help countries in the region fight COVID-19.
At a time when hunger is a growing concern the company is donating nutritious food and beverages to 170,000 families, corresponding to 850,000 people, across the region in Angola, Burkina Faso, Cameron, Gabon, Mali, Niger and Nigeria.
Nestlé is also contributing masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE) to keep frontline health workers safe.
The company is also donating medical equipment to hospitals in Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Senegal. Additionally, in Burkina Faso, it will donate three ventilators, for use in intensive care units.
Efforts to reduce the transmission of the COVID-19 virus will be carried out in partnership with the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).
“We’re offering our full support to families across Central and West Africa during these challenging times, and to those who are battling to keep them safe,” said Rémy Ejel, CEO of Nestlé Central and West Africa Ltd.
“Nestlé has been present in Central & West Africa for more than 60 years. We live and operate in these communities across the region, so we are committed to help in any way that we can”. Mr Ejel said.
Contributing to improving sanitation
Through its partnership with the IFRC, the company will contribute close to USD 420,000 to strengthen Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) activities in Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Senegal.
The donation to the IFRC, which is part of the total relief effort in the region, includes cash donations and supply of medical and other equipment.
The two partners aim to limit the transmission of the virus by improving hygiene practices in public areas such as bus stations and in communities where WASH infrastructure is lacking.
In addition, they will join forces to sensitize people about prevention measures and the importance of eating safe and nutritious foods.
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Providing affordable accessible nutrition
Nestlé in Central and West Africa is committed to ensuring people continue to have access to safe, affordable and nutritious foods to feed their families in these uncertain times.
Production has continued at Nestlé sites in the region, despite the challenges faced.
Nestlé has implemented enhanced hygiene protocols and additional safety measures for the frontline staff working at its ten factories, its distribution centres and its sales offices.
PPE has also been provided to suppliers, distributors and retailers, including MAGGI ‘Mammies’ and ‘Pappies’ working in open markets.
“We are doing all we can to ensure that our employees, contractors and partners remain healthy and safe. This is our number one priority” said Mr Ejel. “We are so grateful for their efforts and their determination to keep supplying our communities with food and beverages, despite the challenges.”