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A matter of life and death

Good nutrition is the difference between a child surviving or thriving. The world has made progress in addressing undernutrition. But progress has not been fast enough or inclusive enough.

The failure to provide children with adequate nutrition, especially in the first 1,000 days after conception, throws away human potential that cannot be recovered.

Each year, 3.1 million children die due to undernutrition and nearly a quarter of all children under five – that’s 155 million children — are stunted.

By 2030 it’s forecast there will be 129 million chronically malnourished children and the target to end malnutrition for all will have been missed by some distance.

Furthermore, there are 42 million overweight under-fives in the world today — 10 million more than two decades ago.

We are advocating for significantly better nutrition for the most vulnerable children. Our priorities are:

• Sufficient funding for nutrition

• Better coordination and understanding of policies to tackle malnutrition

• Increased accountability for action on nutrition

• Improvements in newborn and infant nutrition, including through the promotion of breastfeeding.

We’re working to strengthen the capacity and coordination of civil society, build evidence on how to better allocate resources for excluded children, give a voice to malnourished children and promote nutrition champions.

We are proud to host the Scaling Up Nutrition Civil Society Network, which represents more than 2,000 national, regional and international organisations.

The network is currently composed of 39 national alliances spanning sectors including: farming, human rights, women’s groups, humanitarian agencies, advocacy and research entities, consumer groups and trade unions. 


Youth Leaders for Nutrition

Youth advocates have created an adolescent nutrition advocacy guide. A toolkit for youth advocates, designed by youth advocates.

Our nutrition, our future

Adolescents in Nigeria and Bangladesh share perspectives on malnutrition, how it affects them and what needs to change.

Our priorities

  1. To ensure that work to end malnutrition is inclusive, and that no child is left behind.
  2. To set national nutrition targets.
  3. To adopt a multi-sectoral, multi-stakeholder approach.
  4. To uphold commitments made individually and collectively.
  5. To ensure appropriate finances are in place.

Our Key Reports

Nutrition: The key to unlocking UK aid's impact: Recommendations, developed by the International Coalition for Advocacy on Nutrition (ICAN), for the UK government to uphold at the 2020 Tokyo Nutrition for Growth Summit.

Call to Action: Gender Equality and Women's and Girls' Empowerment

Don't Push It: Why the formula milk industry must clean up its act

Nutrition Sensitivity: How agriculture can improve child nutrition

Youth Leaders For Nutrition: Adolescent Nutrition Advocacy

Unequal PortionsEnding malnutrition for every last child

Malnutrition in Zambia:  Harnessing social protection for the most vulnerable

Read the latest blogs on hunger

Our experts

Katherine Richards

Katherine Richards

Head of Hunger & Nutrition Policy and Advocacy

Katherine Richards is the Head of Hunger and Nutrition in the Policy, Advocacy and Campaigns Division in the Department of International Development at Save the Children UK.

Katherine and her team lead the development of both global and UK workstreams to advocate for significantly better nutrition for the most excluded children. They seek to raise more funds for interventions, improve policy and enhance coordination. 

Katherine is also vice-Chair of the Scaling Up Nutrition Civil Society Network and hosts the secretariat in her team in London. Katherine started her career in local government. She led equality and diversity work in one the most deprived communities in the UK, focusing on issues such as migration and access to services. Another highlight of Katherine’s career is time spent working with on HIV and AIDS advocacy and health system strengthening in Namibia.

Hugh Bagnall-Oakeley

Senior Hunger Policy & Research Adviser

Hugh Bagnall-Oakeley has over 35 years’ experience in rural development and agribusiness, including 15 years of team leadership and project management.

His experience includes institutional development, extension, institutional change, agribusiness development and planning, community development, and participatory appraisal in a rural livelihoods context. He has extensive project management experience in project preparation, log frame development, strategy formulation, work plan development, monitoring and project evaluation, reporting, and budgeting.

Hugh has worked for the UK Department for International Development, the European Union, the World Bank, the Food and Agriculture Organization, the African Development Bank and private enterprise. He has worked in India, East and Southern Africa, South East Asia, Papua New Guinea and the Pacific Islands. He has published more than 50 reports and 12 papers.

Cara Flowers

Cara Flowers

Scaling Up Nutrition Civil Society Network (SUN CSN) Manager

Cara Flowers has previously worked at SOAS, The World Water Council and Oxfam. She has lived in France, Palestine and Uganda and in addition to English is fluent in French with some basic Arabic language skills. She recently provided a commentary for a special edition of the Journal Global Food Security.

She has a BA in Anthropology from Durham University, an MSc in Plant Taxonomy and Biodiversity from Edinburgh University and an MSc by research in Water Management and Smallholder Fairtrade Agriculture from Cranfield University. She has also undertaken short courses at the School of Oriental and African Studies, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical medicine and with Professionals in Humanitarian Protection and Assistance. Her interests lie in cross-disciplinary research and policy, participatory approaches to civil society engagement and indigenous knowledge and rights.

Cecilia Ruberto

Cecilia Ruberto

Scaling up Nutrition Civil Society Network (SUN CSN) – Learning Route Coordinator 

Previously, Cecilia worked as monitoring, evaluation and learning specialist at International Fund for Agricultural Development; as Learning Route coordinator with PROCASUR; as programme administrator at CGIAR Research Programme on maize; and as a volunteer with civil society organisations supporting local development, youth and informal workers. 

Cecilia's main fields of expertise are related to agriculture; integrated sustainable waste and sanitation management; participatory planning, monitoring, evaluation and learning; knowledge management; and project management. Cecilia is Italian and is fluent in French, English and Spanish. 

Christopher Twiss

Christopher Twiss

Senior Nutrition Policy and Advocacy Adviser

Christopher's work currently focuses on global advocacy work and nutrition financing issues.

Before joining Save the Children, Christopher worked on various international development projects, the majority nutrition focused, with the World Bank, Buenos Aires City Government, and Accenture Development Partnerships.

He has extensive field experience in west and southern Africa and has also worked in Latin America. He holds an MA in Politics from the University of Edinburgh, and a Master of Public Policy from the University of Oxford.

Claire Leigh

Claire Leigh

Director of International Development Policy, Advocacy and Campaigns (Job Share)

Claire has been Director of Save the Children UK’s International Development Department since 2016, and she currently manages Save the Children’s Education, and Inclusive Development teams.

Prior to that she worked on policy and research in a variety of international settings, including for the United Nations Development Programme and UNICEF in New York, the Overseas Development Institute in London, and the governments of Rwanda and Liberia.

She has a particular interest in aid effectiveness, fragile states, state-building and governance. Between 2007 and 2009 Claire was a senior policy adviser in the British Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit, and in the Policy Planning Staff of the UK Foreign Office.

She holds a first class degree in History from the University of Cambridge and an MPhil in International Relations from the University of Oxford.

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