From Theory to Practice: The Latest in Program Implementation and Effectiveness at #MNF2023

Insights and reflections by Mduduzi Mbuya (Director of Knowledge Leadership, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, GAIN USA) ; and Deanna Olney (Director, Nutrition, Diets, and Health, International Food Policy Research Institute, IFPRI USA); Co-Chairs for Track 3 of the Micronutrient Forum’s 6th Global Conference Program Committee. This post is part of the Exclusive #N4R Previews blog series.  This post is part of the Exclusive #N4R Previews blog series.

Dr Mduduzi Mbuya and GAIN colleagues visiting a poultry farm in Rwanda, hearing about their innovations to scaling up egg production and distribution.

As we race against time to combat nutritional challenges and unlock human potential, we have the power to reverse the fate of many and end hidden hunger. Imagine a future in 2030 where our accomplishments are celebrated, rather than lamenting our missed opportunities. The Micronutrient Forum’s 6th Global Conference offers a significant opportunity to shift the current trajectory towards a better future. 

With the theme, “Nutrition for Resilience,” this conference serves as a platform for united action. But how can we achieve this lofty goal in an increasingly complex and crisis-prone world? As co-chairs of Track 3 for the Forum’s 6th Global Conference, we have had the privilege to work with colleagues to curate a program that helps us find solutions to the interconnected challenges across food, social protection, health, and other systems that constrain progress. 

We are excited first about the approach. Track 3 focuses on navigating the complexities of dietary and nutrition solutions, while considering scientific rigor, on-field implementation, and policy linkages. This year, the conference will convene diverse voices, including implementers, researchers, academics, decision-makers, and advocates to address key topics. 

These topics include dietary patterns, food safety, food fortification, micronutrient data gaps, program design, implementation science, monitoring and evaluation, as well as sustainability and scalability of successful approaches. Discussions will aim to prioritize resilient micronutrient programs, robust data systems, integration and scalability for improved diet, nutrition, and health outcomes to ultimately build individual, population, and system resilience. 

Recent findings suggest that hidden hunger affects far more people than previously believed. Track 3 will explore how key stakeholders can strengthen interventions across health, social protection, and food systems, deliver them to achieve their full potential, and secure the necessary financing for their implementation. Our discussions will center on community engagement, logistics, research, innovation, and how to move from efficacy to effectiveness at scale. 

Deanna Olney with the Helen Keller Intl & IFPRI Burkina Faso Enhanced Home Food Production Evaluation Team.

Second, we are excited about the content of the sessions in Track 3. We will delve into topics such as effectiveness of large-scale food fortification, measuring impact and lessons learned from multisectoral nutrition programs, social assistance integration and effectiveness, and the requirements for sustaining and scaling successful approaches. 

The Forum's 6th Global Conference

October 16-20, 2023
The Hague, Netherlands and Virtual

Effective implementation, backed by evidence, and focused on scale and scalability, can transform lives. MNF 2023 will convene experts to ideate and find ways to transform our health, social protection, and food systems, and together, we will step closer to 2030, re-energized in our mission to make a difference.  We look forward to charting this course with you online and in The Hague. 

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