Many different factors shape the nutrition situation of households and individuals. Food availability and access, health and education have a major impact on nutrition, but social and gender relations, environmental conditions, infrastructure, the local economy and the political situation also affect people’s nutrition. These factors interact in unique ways depending on the context and livelihoods of households.
There have been a great many initiatives related to nutrition, food security and livelihoods and a wealth of experiences in the field. But all too often the synergies between interventions in different sectors are not exploited enough, and as a result, the impact on nutrition remains weak.
Experience shows that a coordinated approach results in a stronger impact. There is a need to strengthen the capacity of professionals working in development and emergencies to work together. The first step is to achieve common understanding of local causes of malnutrition, as a foundation for sound planning and effective partnerships.
To achieve common understanding and facilitate joint action, nutrition-focused workshops bringing together professionals from different disciplines and organisations, at local or regional level, have proven to be a powerful tool.