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Events

Early childhood nutrition in Southern Africa: Investing in Healthy Children for Healthy Countries

October 2-3, 2018

Thaba Bosiu Cultural Village, Thaba Bosiu, Lesotho

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  • Despite recent progress, stunting rates in Southern Africa remain high, especially compared to other countries with similar income levels. About 30% of children under five in the region—including Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, eSwatini, Zimbabwe and Zambia—are stunted as a result of chronic undernutrition. 

    This reality has wide-ranging, long-lasting and negative consequences. Being malnourished in early childhood elevates the risks of morbidity and mortality, increases costs of and returns to social sector investments, and decreases lifelong income-earning potential and productivity.  It results in a downward cycle of poverty, ill health and poor nutrition across generations.

    Through various policies and programs, government leaders throughout the sub-region have recognized the importance of proper nutrition to reducing poverty and inequality and made early childhood nutrition a national priority.

    Hosted by the Government of Lesotho, with support from the World Bank and UNICEF, the high-level forum on October 3 aims to highlight this commitment and catalyze further action to improve early childhood nutrition outcomes.  Senior government representatives, together with partner organizations, will exchange experiences and seek commitment to improve outcomes for their countries’ children.

    To complement the forum, the event includes technical panels and a nutrition exhibition on October 2.  The technical panels and nutrition exhibition will provide a deep-dive on new global research, country-level experiences and specific programs on improving nutrition outcomes.  

    Financial support for this work was provided by the Government of Japan through the Japan Trust Fund for Scaling Up Nutrition.

  • Agenda for the October 2 Technical Panels

    Time

    Panel topic and outline

    8:00

    Registration

    8:45

    Welcoming session

    • Program Director: Ms. Maseithati Mabeleng, Principal Secretary, Cabinet Economic Affairs
    • Opening Remarks:
      • Mr. Paul Noumba Um, Country Director for Botswana, eSwatini, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, World Bank
      • Hon. Temeki Phoenix Ts’olo, Minister, Office of the Prime Minister of Lesotho

    9:00

    Session 1:  Early childhood nutrition in Southern Africa: Why does it matter?

    Framing the importance of multisectoral responses to improve early childhood nutrition outcomes effectively

    10:00

    Health break

    10:30

    Session 2: How to deliver high-quality services to effectively reach the poor?

    Approaches across sectors to promote early childhood development and nutrition with a focus on social protection and service delivery platforms.

    12:00

    Lunch

    13:30

    Session 3a: What services help improve nutrition in southern Africa?

    Debunking myths around drivers and impact of agriculture and WASH interventions on nutrition using new evidence and findings from recent World Bank flagship reports

    14:30

    Session 3b: What services help improve nutrition in southern Africa?

    Exploring the role of education to promote optimal early childhood development and nutrition

    15:30

    Health break

    16:00

    Session 4: How to optimize investments to combat child stunting?

    Increasing efficiency of nutrition spending through evidence-based investments

    17:00

    Closing session

    • Closing Remarks by
      • Ms. Janet Entwistle, Country Representative, Lesotho, World Bank
      • Hon. Tlohelang Aumane, Minister of Development Planning of Lesotho

    17:30

    Cocktail reception (Jointly hosted by the Government of Lesotho and the World Bank)

     

  • Agenda for the October 3 High-Level Forum

    Time

    Session

     

    8:00

    Registration

     

    8:45

    Opening session

    • Program Director: Mr. Moahloli Mphaka, Government Secretary of Lesotho
    • Opening prayer: Christian Council of Lesotho
    • Entertainment
    • Remarks: Mr. Paul Noumba Um, Country Director for Botswana, eSwatini, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, the World Bank
    • Entertainment
    • Welcome address: Her Honor Mrs. Inonge Wina, Vice President of the Republic of Zambia
    • Entertainment
    • Opening statement: The Right Honorable Prime Minister, Dr. MotsoahaeThomas Thabane of Lesotho
    • Entertainment
     

    9:30

    Global perspective: Framing the discussion on early childhood nutrition

    10:15

    Health break

    10:45

    Regional and country perspective: Learning from experience to make nutrition a national priority

    12:00

    Lunch

    13:30

    Regional and country perspective: Adopting a vision to improve early childhood nutrition

    • Opening remarks by Ms. Duduzile Simelane, Director for Social and Human Development, SADC
    • Country presentations on their visions to accelerate better outcomes in early childhood nutrition
      • Lesotho: Hon. Monyane Moleleki, Deputy Prime Minister and Ms. Masekonyela Sebotsa, Director, Food and Nutrition Coordinating Office
      • Zimbabwe: His Honor Constantino Chiwenga, Vice President, and Dr George Kembo, Director, Food and Nutrition Council
    • Moderator: Ms. Duduzile Simelane

     

    14:30

    Regional and country perspective: Committing to prioritize the development of healthy children
    • Country pledges on committing to early childhood nutrition
      • His Royal Highness Prince Masitsela, Kingdom of eSwatini
      • Hon. Dr. Alfred Madigele, Minister of Health and Wellness, Botswana
      • Hon. Susan Shabango, Minister of Social Development, South Africa
    • Moderator: Ms. Duduzile Simelane
     

    15:30

    Health break

     

    16:00

    Closing session 

     

DETAILS

  • DATE: October 2-3, 2018
  • WHERE: Thaba Bosiu Cultural Village, Thaba Bosiu, Lesotho