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World Bank seeks Innovative Ideas to Improve Nutrition in South Asia PDF Print E-mail
HTML clipboard ISLAMABAD, Feb 11 (APP): The World Bank on Tuesday launched a competitive Development Marketplace for Nutrition aimed at finding and funding innovative ideas that will change lives of thousands of  pregnant women, infants, and young children in South Asia.

According to the bank statement issued here on Wednesday titled “Family and Community Approaches to Improving Infant and Young Child Nutrition,” the Development Marketplace is looking for entrepreneurial organizations across South Asia to submit proposals for local,

small‑scale projects which have the potential to be scaled up and replicated. 

The winners will be selected by an international jury of development and nutrition experts at the Development Marketplace event in August, 2009 in Dhaka, Bangladesh and will receive funding to implement their proposals.

“Malnutrition affects the lives of millions of infants and young children in South Asia,” said Isabel Guerrero, World Bank Vice President for the South Asia region.

“It saps a child’s growth potential, delays enrollment in school, limits school achievements, and lowers lifetime earnings.

This competition offers a unique opportunity to channel small grants directly to community organizations and NGOs who present innovative ways to address this devastating problem.”

Malnutrition is the single biggest contributor to child mortality in the world.

In no place is this problem more serious than in South Asia, where child malnutrition rates are among the highest in the world.

Both child underweight and stunting rates in the region are nearly double those in Africa. Pakistan also suffers from high rates of childhood malnutrition with 39% of children moderately or severely malnourished and has not made significant progress over the last two decades.

The global increase in food prices is affecting Pakistan as well, it poses another serious threat to the nutrition of young children and women of child‑bearing age, particularly among the poor

“Recent evidence clearly shows that there are proven effective interventions to improve nutrition,” said Andrea Vermehren, World Bank team leader for the Development Marketplace.

“However, effectively implementing these interventions ‑ and implementing them at scale is a major challenge. We believe this effort will help find new ways of providing innovative solutions to malnutrition.”

The South Asia Regional Development Marketplace is implemented in partnership with the Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ), Micronutrient Initiative, UNICEF, and the World Food Program.

The competition is open to civil society groups, social entrepreneurs, youth organizations, private foundations, academia, and private sector corporations in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan,

India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

The maximum award will be US$40,000 per proposal. Proposals will be accepted until March 31, 2009.

For eligibility criteria, details on the competition and to submit proposals online, visit the South Asia Regional Development Marketplace website ‑ www.worldbank.org/nutritiondm2009.

 
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