The participants in a group picture
The African Union Development Agency-New Partnership for Africa’s Development (AUDA-NEPAD) has held a nutrition workshop for the youth and media, calling on them to take action toward ensuring proper nutrition and food security for the continent.
The two-day awareness creation and orientation programme saw participants, representing various African countries, gather in Accra to learn about the AU Year of Nutrition among other knowledge-sharing activities.
Senior special advisor to the AUDA-NEPAD Chief Executive Officer (CEO) on secondment from FAO, Bibi Giyose, said the programme was born out of the impetus of promoting food security and nutrition on the continent.
She said by bringing together the youth and media to share knowledge, they would better champion the strengthening of agro-food systems, and health, and social protection systems for the acceleration of human, social and economic capital development.
“By engaging the youth and the media, the idea is to find the best entry point to push the agenda and get the message across and to fully engage them in our quest to change the mindset and narrative and improve on food security,” she said.
Ms. Giyose noted that the programme was one of many being undertaken by the AUDA-NEPAD to engage different government sectors, civil society, and the private sector; from planting to raising animals, to the blue economy.
“Out of this we hope to have sub-regional and national level dialogues so we keep the momentum, we maintain the interest, and get the youth platforms to fully engage and be our eyes and ears on the ground and for them to push us,” she said.
Ag. Head of Nutrition AUDA-NEPAD, Kefilwe Moalosi, said 2022 is the AU Year of Nutrition (YoN) under the umbrella, of “Strengthening resilience in nutrition and food security on the African continent.”
She noted that the general objective of the AU YoN is to celebrate gains made in recent years and secure greater political commitment and investment to address the ongoing nutrition challenges.
Ms. Moalosi said AU YoN has four priorities including advocacy for increased commitment and investment in nutrition and institutional capacity enhancement and enabling environment for intensified action and delivery of results and impact.
It also includes data management and information systems, knowledge generation and dissemination, to inform decision making as well as the creation of partnerships and mutual accountability platforms for coherent and harmonized action and transparency.
She said the AUDA-NEPAD has implemented several nutrition flagship programmes like the Home-Grown School Feeding programme which is being implemented at the national levels as well as the lunch of the African common position on food systems.
She indicated that other events have been lined up including the African Day for Food and Nutrition Security which would promote traditional and indigenous knowledge to enrich Africa’s diet and food systems.
By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri