The Northern Regional Minister, Hon. Shani Alhassan Shaibu, has praised USAID Ghana and its collaborating partners for establishing the Advancing Nutrition Project.
The initiative is aimed at complementing the government’s efforts to combat food insecurity in the region and the country as a whole.
Speaking during the Northern Regional closeout event of the USAID Advancing Nutrition Ghana Project on Thursday, September 28, 2023, in Tamale, the Minister highlighted the project’s significance in enhancing the nutritional and health conditions of vulnerable populations in the region. Despite the achievements already realized, he emphasized the ongoing challenges that must be addressed.
“The project has significantly enhanced the capabilities of healthcare workers and community volunteers, making them more effective in delivering essential nutrition services to women and children,” the Minister stated.
He further noted the instrumental role played by the Ghana Health Service, with support from the project, in implementing a National Nutrition Policy and Action Plan that has improved nutrition outcomes in the region and the nation as a whole.
Hon. Shaibu emphasized that the project’s conclusion does not mark the end but rather the start of a sustained effort to maintain the progress achieved thus far. He called upon the dedicated healthcare workers and community volunteers to continue their vital work in addressing malnutrition.
In his closing remarks, the Minister commended USAID Ghana, Development Partners, and implementing Partners for their significant contributions to this initiative.
He also urged other stakeholders to collaborate with the government in the ongoing fight against malnutrition in the region and the nation.
USAID Advancing Nutrition has been actively operating in Ghana since 2020. The project has provided technical support to enhance the Government of Ghana’s initiatives in improving the planning and delivery of services aimed at promoting household resilience and the early childhood growth and development of communities across 55 districts in five regions.
The project’s efforts focused on strengthening coordination mechanisms, enhancing nutrition planning and integration into development plans, and addressing the underlying causes of malnutrition in Ghana. USAID Advancing Nutrition adopted a multi-sectoral approach to enhance the quality of nutrition services for pregnant women, lactating mothers, and children under the age of five.
The collaboration involved working closely with government ministries, departments, agencies, and other partners to strengthen multi-sectoral planning, financing, and coordination of food and nutrition security, improve the quality and reach of nutrition service delivery, as well as to enhance community structures and behaviours to improve household nutrition and resilience.