Online Program

Enhancing Nutrition and Food Security during the First 1,000 Days through Gender-sensitive Social and Behavioral Change

Wednesday, November 4, 2015 : 12:50 p.m. - 1:10 p.m.

Megan Ivankovich, MPH, WI-HER LLC, Takoma Park, MD
Taroub Faramand, MD, MPH, WI-HER LLC, Vienna, VA
INTRODUCTION:  Undernutrition during the critical 1,000 days from pregnancy to a child’s second birthday can cause life-long, irreversible damage, compromising children’s health, educational achievement, and productivity as adults. Gender integration is increasingly considered a best practice and evidence suggests it leads to improved maternal and child health outcomes; however, the use of strategies to change gender-related behaviors surrounding nutrition has been insufficiently studied.

APPROACH:  A comprehensive literature review, project audit, and practitioner interviews were conducted to identify evidence-based strategies and best practices in gender-sensitive social and behavioral change (SBC). This research is based on the 1000 Days Approach, which prioritizes the critical period between a woman’s pregnancy and her child’s second birthday to maximize impact.

RESULTS: Findings were synthesized to develop practical resources that present the rationale, best practices, tips, and tools for integrating gender-sensitive SBC into nutrition and food security activities. Successful projects are highlighted. Materials are evidence-based, practical, and easy to understand. While the research focuses on work conducted in the USAID-funded Food for Peace countries that have active development projects, findings may be applicable to similar projects in other countries.

DISCUSSION: These materials aim to strengthen the capacity of development practitioners working in nutrition and food security to design, implement, and evaluate gender-sensitive SBC programming in order to improve nutritional outcomes for pregnant and lactating women and children under two. In the long term, they have the potential to decrease health disparities and address health equity for millions of the world’s most vulnerable people.

Learning Areas:

Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Diversity and culture
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Explain the potential impact of integrating gender-sensitive social and behavioral change strategies in nutrition programming. Describe clear approaches, best practices, and tools to promote gender-sensitive SBC to improve nutrition outcomes in nutrition and food security activities.

Keyword(s): Nutrition, Food Security

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have led or participated in several federally-funded projects focusing on gender integration, nutrition, and food security and conducted and disseminated similar research. Strengthening the capacity of practitioners to design, implement, and evaluate programs to improve health outcomes has been my professional focus.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.