Dangote And Bill & Melinda Gates To End Undernutrition In Nigeria

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Alhaji Aliko Dangote and Bill Gates
Alhaji Aliko Dangote and Bill Gates

The Dangote Foundation has entered a deal with Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to commit $100 million over the next five years towards ending under-nutrition in Nigeria.

Alhaji Aliko Dangote and Bill Gates
Alhaji Aliko Dangote and Bill Gates

This commitment is expected to improve the lives of at least five million families by 2020.

The deal was announced by Alhaji Aliko Dangote and Bill Gates today during a press conference in Abuja, Nigeria.

They noted that in spite of the rapid economic growth, Nigeria is home to the highest number of stunted children in Africa and the second highest globally.

“Almost one in five Nigerian children is acutely malnourished and more than one in three children suffer from stunting. With its vital role in child health, growth and cognitive development, better nutrition will be essential to unleashing the potential of Nigeria’s next generation.”

Nutrition, they have identified, as one of the highest impact investments they can make in Nigeria’s future growth and prosperity.

According to the two organizations,  well-nourished children are more likely to grow up to be healthy, fend off preventable diseases, achieve more in school and even earn higher income as adults,” said Bill Gates.

“This partnership builds on our foundation’s strong commitment to Nigeria – one of several countries where we are working closely with the government, the private sector and civil society to improve health and development outcomes.”

However, a joint statement issued to that effect indicates that the two foundations will begin a joint planning process to determine the details of the partnership.

Programs will include community-based approaches and proven interventions linked to behaviour change, fortification of staple foods with essential micronutrients, the community management of acute malnutrition and investments in the local production of nutritious foods.

Meanwhile, their main objective will be improving the livelihoods of households by supporting nutrition-sensitive agricultural programs that can increase family income, improve diets and empower women and youth.

Alhaji Aliko Dangote said, “In the spirit of our new partnership, we encourage even more deliberate and significant commitments from the Government of Nigeria at all levels to step up investments in nutrition.”

“…… It is time to make strategic investments in interventions to eliminate malnutrition in Nigeria. This will be achieved through a massive scale-up of interventions, matched with effective coordination of efforts and innovative sustainable solutions.’

He said, they have to ensure that children who are already malnourished receive help and are prevented from dying while they improve the conditions that led to them being malnourished.

Source: Newsghana.com.gh

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