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Developing capacity for strengthening food security and nutrition

Regional

Most of the countries in the Caucasus and Central Asia region have made significant socio-economic progress over the past decades, and in their efforts towards improving nutrition, they are increasingly looking for home-grown ideas and experiences. The “Developing Capacity for Strengthening Food Security and Nutrition in Selected Countries of the Caucasus and Central Asia” project gathers best practices and lessons learned to inform this countries' policies and strategies on food security and nutrition. The project plans to compile and analyze a compendium of good practices in building intersectoral coordination mechanisms to increase food security and improve nutrition-sensitive social protection and school feeding programmes. In addition, three in-depth case studies on this topic will be published. To gather specific country experiences, the project organizes online surveys, online discussions and “calls for papers”.

The project collaborates with the Forum on Food Security and Nutrition in Europe and Central Asia (FSN Forum in ECA). The FSN Forum in ECA provides a channel for stakeholders to share (in Russian and English) their ideas and experiences across countries, sub-regions and the Europe and Central Asia region, and in particular to contribute to policy-making processes on food security and nutrition. The outputs of the activities organized with the FSN Forum in ECA will inform policy briefs and support the project’s efforts towards promoting a comprehensive and harmonized approach to food security, nutrition, social protection and agriculture in the region.

To encourage the harmonization of approaches in the Eurasian region, and policy coherence in the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) Member States in particular, the project has organized and supported several regional activities. For example, the project gathered experts from Armenia, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan to participate in the joint FAO/WHO/WFP regional policy consultation on school food and nutrition programs in Budapest in 2017. In addition, a concept note will be developed for regional parliamentary cooperation in the form of a “Eurasian Parliamentary Alliance”.

The operationalization of the linkages between agriculture, food security, nutrition and social protection, requires awareness-raising efforts and promoting of political commitment. The project is concerned with building a regional consensus for a comprehensive approach to these four sectors, involving the food security and nutrition councils from the countries of the region, the Secure Nutrition Knowledge Platform of the World Bank, and other initiatives, including SUN Movement. In collaboration with UNICEF and WHO, the project specifically promotes healthy child nutrition and social policies in the region.