The UN Network for SUN, officially established in June 2013 by the Principals of FAO, UNICEF, WFP, and WHO, is responsible for translating and achieving UN nutrition commitments in SUN countries. The UN Network elevates the nutrition dialogue through its senior leadership and helps to leverage the collective strengths of the UN agencies, to foster innovations, find efficiencies and enhance complementarity across agencies and with government and SUN networks. This enables the UN to work more effectively to deliver nutrition actions at scale and to achieve value-for-money and results.
In addition, the UN Network leverages the nutrition resources, skills, expertise and knowledge of its member UN agencies, programmes and funds to support convergence along the six pillars of the United Nations Decade of Action on Nutrition 2016-2025 in support of national nutrition efforts.

At The Country Level

Support For SUN Processes

Support for SUN processes at country level continues at a considerable pace, particularly through the efforts of national and international REACH facilitators. The UN Network for SUN through REACH has now provided direct facilitation and coordination support to governments in 17 countries. It is expected that the UN Network for SUN will eventually be formed in all SUN countries. The UN Networks for SUN at country level are now engaged in identifying concrete actions to strengthen joint support for country’s priorities in scaling up nutrition. These include conducting a joint inventory of nutrition actions, developing a joint country support strategy/agenda for nutrition and a joint common narrative.

Efforts In Action

REACH has supported efforts to achieve government approval for the establishment of a nutrition coordination cell in Mali and the launch of high-level coordination platforms in Burundi and Chad. Functional capacity development plans to address challenges of scaling up nutrition in a multi-sectoral and multi-stakeholder approach were completed in Ghana and Nepal while plans are underway to support other countries that have expressed interest.

For The Global Level

In November 2014, REACH was requested to take on the leadership for the UN Network for SUN Secretariat by the Principals of UNICEF, FAO, WFP and WHO. TOR’s have now been finalized for the UN Network at global and country levels which outline the expectation of the UN Network for SUN at country level and include 7 key deliverables (joint UN inventory, strategy, messaging, resource mobilization, programming, accountability (through the use of a UN dashboard).

Support For SUN Processes

Support for SUN processes at country level continues at a considerable pace, particularly through the efforts of national and international REACH facilitators. The UN Network for SUN through REACH has now provided direct facilitation and coordination support to governments in 17 countries. It is expected that the UN Network for SUN will eventually be formed in all SUN countries. The UN Networks for SUN at country level are now engaged in identifying concrete actions to strengthen joint support for country’s priorities in scaling up nutrition. These include conducting a joint inventory of nutrition actions, developing a joint country support strategy/agenda for nutrition and a joint common narrative.

Efforts In Action

REACH has supported efforts to achieve government approval for the establishment of a nutrition coordination cell in Mali and the launch of high-level coordination platforms in Burundi and Chad. Functional capacity development plans to address challenges of scaling up nutrition in a multi-sectoral and multi-stakeholder approach were completed in Ghana and Nepal while plans are underway to support other countries that have expressed interest.

The Commitment From Five UN Agencies

On June 8, 2013 the Principals of five UN Agencies with a mandate in nutrition met in London during the Nutrition for Growth high-level event where they endorsed the UN Network for Scaling Up Nutrition. The signatories include José Graziano da Silva, Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization, Margaret Chan, Director-General of the World Health Organization, Kanayo Nwanze, President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development, Anthony Lake, Executive Director of the United Nations Children’s Fund and Ertharin Cousin, Executive Director of the World Food Programme

Progress In The Past Year

  • The Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2) was convened in November 2014 in Rome, jointly by WHO and FAO
  • In November 2014, REACH was requested to take on the leadership for the UN Network for SUN Secretariat by the Principals of UNICEF, FAO, WFP and WHO
  • TOR’s were finalized for the UN Network at global and country levels including 7 key deliverables (joint UN inventory, strategy,messaging, resource mobilization, programming, accountability (dashboard)
  • The UN Global Nutrition Agenda (UNGNA) v1.0 in June 2015
  • The UNSCN in collaboration with the UN Network for SUN organised a UN Regional Nutrition Meeting for Asia and the Pacific under the theme of Strengthening UN joint country support for improved nutrition programming
  • UNICEF on behalf of the UN Network for SUN in collaboration with the SMS organised and facilitated four regional workshops on costing and tracking investments in nutrition (Bangkok, Entebbe, Abidjan and Guatemala City)
  • The UN Network in Ghana, Myanmar, Mozambique, Mali and Burkina have completed a UN Nutrition Inventory to support strategic focus

Governance

In November 2014, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the World Health Organisation (WHO), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP) agreed that the UN REACH Partnership (Renewed Efforts Against Child Hunger and Nutrition) will serve as the UN coordinating and focal body on nutrition in SUN Countries. Since then, the REACH Secretariat has also acted as the UN Network for SUN. The Standing Committee on Nutrition (UNSCN) focuses on global level nutrition policy matters. The UN Network for SUN/REACH is governed by a Steering Committee of the 4 agencies mentioned above along with IFAD which is acts as in an advisory capacity. While the membership of the UN Network for SUN currently includes the above mentioned agencies, other UN agencies engaged in nutrition at country level are encouraged to join the Network. Other agencies engaging in nutrition are UNHCR (Ghana, Rwanda), UNDP (Bangladesh), UNFPA (Mozambique, Myanmar, Uganda), UNAIDS (in Ghana and Tanzania) and ILO (Philippines).