PAHO/WHO, USAID, SPRING, and FANTA are convening a technical meeting envisioned as the first step in a process to create guidance around diet and eating practices of adolescent girls and women of reproductive age.
The 2013 Lancet Series on Maternal and Child Nutrition provided new evidence on the importance of women’s nutrition at the time of conception and during pregnancy. The series also identified adolescent girls as a key priority, placing them together with women of reproductive age and mothers at the center of nutrition interventions. Given sufficient opportunity, including access to education and work, adolescent girls can become key contributors to the social and economic advancement of their countries. Fundamental to school achievement and productivity in the home and workplace, is good nutrition.
Despite the recognized importance of adolescent girls’ and women’s nutrition for their health and that of their children, this group is virtually neglected in nutrition programming with the exception of provision of iron and folic acid supplements during pregnancy. The development of a set of recommendations for key diet and eating practices for adolescent girls, women of reproductive age, and mothers will be useful to rapidly expand nutrition programming for this target group.
Scheduled to take place March 16-17, 2015 in Washington D.C., the meeting will bring together global leaders in adolescent girls and/or women’s nutrition. The objectives are to review insights and lessons learned from two discussion papers commissioned by USAID’s SPRING project around adolescent girls’, women’s, and maternal nutrition; identify characteristics and issues related to key diet and eating practices for strengthening policies and programs; and propose next steps in the development of a set of recommendations for key diet and eating practices.