The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Susannah Masur
Communications Officer, ACF-USA
Contact Susannah Masur
Direct: 212-967-7800 x133

ACF: World Leaders Must Address Acute Malnutrition

Humanitarian organization calls for action on childhood condition during Food Summit


World leaders are failing to take sufficient action to combat
childhood malnutrition, Action Against Hunger | ACF International
warned today ahead of next week's World Food Summit in Rome. The global
humanitarian group urges governments assembling there to commit to
reducing the five million annual deaths of children from acute

While governments have pledged to bolster agricultural production in
developing countries, their focus on long-term solutions risks
neglecting the immediate crisis of childhood malnutrition. Even though
the deadliest forms of the condition can be treated effectively, less
than 10 percent of the 19 million children with life-threatening severe
acute malnutrition currently receive treatment.

"Until nutrition is prioritized alongside investments in
agriculture, acute malnutrition will continue to claim the lives of
millions of children," said Nan Dale, Executive Director of Action
Against Hunger. "With the economic recession and high food prices
taking a devastating toll on the most vulnerable among us, now is the
time for world leaders to take concrete steps to address this growing
Action Against Hunger is urging world leaders meeting in Rome to
prioritize nutrition as part of ongoing efforts to address global food
insecurity by:

  1. Allocating specific funding to the detection, treatment and prevention of childhood malnutrition;
  2. Reflecting the importance of food safety nets in financial
    commitments. Safety nets help families afford a nutritious diet for
    their children and protect against shocks to food consumption;
  3. Creating international and national mechanisms to address
    malnutrition from a range of sectors, including agricultural
    development, health, water & sanitation, and nutrition; and
  4. Establishing an accountability mechanism to ensure commitments are leveraged into real action.

Action Against Hunger / Action Contre la Faim (ACF), an international relief and development organization committed to saving the lives of malnourished children and families, provides sustainable access to safe water and long-term solutions to hunger. For nearly three decades, ACF has pursued its vision of a world without hunger by combating hunger in emergency situations of conflict, natural disaster, and chronic food insecurity.