ABUJA – As part of strategies to provide adequate information that would help improve nutrition in Nigeria, a non-governmental advocacy group, Media Centre Against child Malnutrition (MeCAM) in conjunction with Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) and Scale-up Nutrition Business Network (SBN) is set to hold ‘2017 Nutrition Symposium’ in Lagos State.
The event comes up this Friday, 4th August, in Lagos State, with the theme: ‘Malnutrition, child development and the media.’
A statement made available to Nigeria Health Online on Monday by National Coordinator, MeCAM, Mr. Remmy Nweke, said the partnership and event would go a long way in scaling up media participation in national nutrition campaigns.
He said the partnership would boost child development and better position the media as agents of positive change in the country. This is even as Nweke called on well-meaning corporate bodies and individuals in the country to join the partners (GAIN and SBN) in programmes such as the symposium to further empower journalists to deliver on their mandates in the society.
Nweke, who doubles as the Group Executive Editor at DigitalSENSE Africa Media, also said that at the symposium, leadership of GAIN and SBN would speak on the topic: “Communicating Nutrition Messages to Stakeholders: Role of the Media,” among others.
The partners, he stated, would be led by Country Team Lead at GAIN and coordinator of SBN Nigeria, Uduak Igbeka, and would dwell on the sub-theme with expertise and dispatch, alongside other experts with vast experiences on nutrition.
He quoted the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) as recently declaring that estimated 12.9 per cent of Nigeria’s 190 million population have been projected to be among some some million undernourished people in the world.
Nweke averred that MeCAM is resolute to use the symposium not only to draw public attention to the threat that malnutrition poses to the future of the country, but to also correct the impression that the menace is restricted to the poor. He emphasized that UNICEF had estimated that at least 2.5 million children in the country suffer from acute malnutrition, thus putting many of them at risk of death; unless properly treated and of course with right information.
This situation, he said, presents clear danger to the socioeconomic wellbeing of the country.
He pledged MeCAM determination to help reverse poor nutritional indices in the nation by providing adequate information to people in the country.
GAIN is an independent non-profit foundation based in Geneva, Switzerland. GAIN was developed at the United Nations (UN) 2002 Special Session of the General Assembly on Children and was founded by Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in 2002.
In 2010, the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement was launched to support national leadership and collective action to scale up nutrition in 2010. SUN was convened by the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) and the UN World Food Programme (WFP) and further supported by an Advisory Group comprised of senior business leaders, with aim to reduce malnutrition in all its forms through mobilising business to invest and innovate in responsible and sustainable actions and operations. To do this SBN provides a neutral platform to broker partnerships and collaboration between business and all actors on nutrition at national, regional and global level to support SUN Country plans.
Media Centre Against Child Malnutrition (MeCAM) Nigeria was founded Thursday, August 28, 2015, as a media advocacy group against child malnutrition and well-being, as well as to strengthen the agro-nutrition capacity and interest of its members professionally in contribution to nation-building, especially in Nigeria and across the continent of Africa among developing countries of the world.
MeCAM is committed to showcasing successful and development efforts in the area of agro-nutrition for the benefit of mankind and for Africa emancipation from extreme hunger especially in children, women and society, centred on Goal 2 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).