ambassador of the European Union to The Gambia has acknowledged that the EU
remains a principal supporter of efforts geared toward addressing food and
nutrition insecurity in The Gambia.
In this endeavour, he added, the European Union would continue to remain a principal supporter.
Attila Lajos was speaking on Thursday at the start of a two-day capacity building for members of the National Alliance for Food Fortification at a hotel in Kololi.
He acknowledged that EU’s funding support represents a huge opportunity to expand and improve food fortification in The Gambia.
He continued: “In addition to the 6.1 MEUR of grant projects in favour of food fortification being implemented by FAO and United Purpose, the EU is providing 100% grant funding to the 11.5 MEUR Envelope B ‘Post Crisis Response to Food and Nutrition Insecurity in The Gambia’, being implemented by FAO/WFP and UNICEF as well as the 3 MEUR Cash Transfer BReST project being implemented by UNICEF; and 4 MEUR ‘School Meals and Disaster Risk Management” project being implemented by WFP. This represents a combined support worth around 25 MEUR or 1.4 billion dalasis.”
Ambassador Lajos noted that it is a fitting tribute to this work that just last week, The Gambia hosted a visit from a very senior IN representative -The asistant U.N. secretary general, who is also the coordinator of Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement.
“May this visit and other ongoing activities in the field, such as the operationalisation of the National Alliance for Food Fortification being hosted by FAO this week, continue to be seen as important demonstration of the international community’s and Gambian authorities’ continued joint commitment to work towards improved food security and Nutrition in the country.”
Progress in meeting nutrition targets, he went on, was enshrined in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and is now mentioned as part of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreed at the U.N. Summit.
“SDG 2.2 specifically mentions ‘By 2030, end all forms of malnutrition including achieving by 2025, the internationally agreed targets on stunting and wasting in children under 5 years of age, and address the nutritional needs of adolescent girls, pregnant and lactating women and older persons.”