Urging our nation's leaders to end hunger

Reducing Malnutrition: We Know What Works

Every year, nearly 3 million mothers and young children die of malnutrition. But putting more resources into programs and strategies that we know work can dramatically reduce this number.

“If we focus on babies and their mothers, you save the most lives,” said Bread President David Beckmann in “Investing in Nutrition,” a video the World Bank produced to urge country leaders to step up their nutrition efforts. “You provide food for hungry kids, and help those mothers introduce nutritionally healthy patterns into their family’s diets. Then set up systems to get key vitamins and minerals into the foods that everybody in the country eats. If we do those few simple things, we could improve the nutrition of hundreds of millions of kids.”

Ministers, leaders of development agencies, and civil society organizations made a similar appeal during last week’s World Bank and International Monetary Fund meetings in Washington, DC. Participants at a “nutrition roundtable” highlighted the progress their countries have made on malnutrition -- and the challenges they still face.

Children who are malnourished suffer the effects throughout their lives. But focusing on the nutritional needs of pregnant mothers and children under 2 has the highest impact on child mortality, maternal health, the optimal physical and intellectual development of children, and a country’s future economic productivity and growth.

Check out Bread's website for more on why nutrition is critical for development, including “New Hope for Malnourished Mothers and Children,” a briefing paper from Bread for the World Institute.


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