Minister Costello welcomes research on Ireland's role in fight against hunger
Minister for Trade and Development Joe Costello has welcomed new research that has highlighted Ireland’s high performance in meeting its overseas aid commitments to help end global hunger and undernutrition.
The Hunger and Nutrition Commitment Index has ranked Ireland 5th out of 23 OECD members on a range of indicators reflecting overall political commitment in the fight to end global hunger.
Speaking today from Washington, where he is attending an event co-hosted by Concern Worldwide to renew Ireland’s commitment to maternal and child nutrition through the 1,000 Days Partnership, Minster Costello highlighted Ireland’s strong performance:
“I very much welcome the recent Report by the Institute of Development Studies and am pleased to see Ireland’s strong ranking. This is testament to our active and prominent role in addressing the joint challenges of hunger and undernutrition. Since the launch of our Hunger Task Force Report in 2008, Ireland has made great progress in putting hunger and nutrition at the centre of our international aid efforts.
“We know from the Lancet Report launched last week that, globally, malnutrition is responsible for nearly half the deaths of children under the age of five. Yet these deaths are largely preventable. Ireland has built strong political support internationally and has invested in policies and programmes aimed at reducing the burden of global hunger. Ireland will continue to build on these efforts through our strong commitment and leadership. We will continue to work to improve our own performance and encourage others to do the same”.
The Minister was in Washington to speak at ‘Sustaining Political Commitments to Scaling Up Nutrition’ which focuses on improving nutrition to children from pregnancy until the child’s second birthday- a period of 1, 000 days. In his keynote address Minister Costello said:
“In 2010 the US and Irish Governments joined together to call for action on maternal and child nutrition. We accepted the challenge to build partnerships that would change lives. We pledged to build partnerships to support mothers and fathers – partnerships that bring together community organisations, the private sector, civil society, local authorities, and national governments.
“I am proud that Ireland was a founding supporter of the Scaling Up Nutrition movement, which has done so much to give us the platform for action that we see here today.
“By 2016, I believe that we can achieve the World Health Assembly target of preventing 25 million children from being stunted. Through a renewed commitment to the 1000 days partnership and through the sustained efforts of us all gathered here today, I believe that we will see within our lifetime a world free from hunger and under-nutrition.”