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19/11/14

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European Commission and Save the Children to strengthen joint fight against child hunger

Around 170 million of the world’s poorest children cannot reach their full potential due to under-nutrition. After their meeting in Brussels, EU Commissioner for Development Andris Piebalgs and CEO of Save the Children Jasmine Whitbread agreed to join forces and speed up the fight against child hunger and under-nutrition and call on other partners to take the action needed to give the chance of a new life to millions of children.

Commissioner Piebalgs said: "Children have a special place in EU development policy. Fighting under-nutrition is vital to equip the world's poorest children with the chances to pull themselves out of poverty when they grow up. To this end the EU has committed to support partner countries in reducing the number of children who are stunted (those whose growth and development, both physical and mental has been compromised because they have not received food that is adequately nutritious) by at least 7 million by 2025.

But the EU alone will not be able to end the suffering of all children. That's why I welcome and fully support Save the Children's EVERY ONE Campaign to prevent the millions of children and mothers dying from preventable diseases every year.

I would also like to stress that the EU will remain a major player in the field of nutrition and health. I am a proud member of the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement which aims to create innovative solutions to under-nutrition.

In 2013 we will further enhance our efforts and as a clear sign of our determination we will launch a new policy paper in a few months to show our comprehensive approach to addressing under-nutrition and gain the support of all EU Member States in our fight against the biggest scourge of the 21st century – child hunger."

Ms Whitbread welcomed Commissioner Piebalgs’s commitment to Save the Children’s EVERY ONE Campaign on child survival. “It is right that every child has a fair chance at life, but almost seven million children die every year and under-nutrition is the underlying cause of a third of those.  We welcome the Commissioner’s leadership and commitment to nutrition.  What will be essential over the coming period is that this political commitment is backed up by the requisite funding in the EU’s Multi-Annual Financial Framework, and that the EU prioritises financial support for country owned nutrition plans. These are steps towards a world free from hunger. Together we can be the generation to ensure that no child goes hungry and every child has a fair chance at life.”

Background:

Around 170 million children in the world suffer from stunting and 3 million children die every year due to food insecurity, poor health and inappropriatechild care. The European Commission will remain committed to improving food and nutrition security in the world and helping to reduce the number of under-nourished children:

  1. The European Commission invests at least €1 billion in agriculture and food security a year
  2. To help to achieve the Millennium Development Goals related to hunger and child mortality, the European Commission has allocated €225 million through its MDG Initiative.
  3. The European Commission will continue to support the Scaling-Up Nutrition Movement to create innovative solutions to undernutrition.
  4. Commissioner Piebalgs also pledged today to step up investments in research for nutrition by supporting projects such as Harvest Plus to develop bio-fortified crops which are rich in nutrients and resilient to drought.

If you have any questions about this meeting please contact Alexandre Polack or Wojtek Talko

Last update: 28/12/2014 |  Top