On Tuesday, October 17, in Yaoundé, Nestlé Cameroon, under the patronage of the Ministry of Public Health, organised a forum on ’How to respond to the nutritional challenges in Cameroon’. The objective of this forum was to initiate a conversation about the need for collective action to address nutritional challenges.
The event attracted more than 120 key stakeholders in the area of nutrition: representatives from government; civil society organisations, including international organisations; health care professionals; academia; and the private sector.
Expert discussions offered opportunities to engage with stakeholders around three topics:
- Nutrition, a strategic way to reach the Sustainable Development Goals
- How to respond to micronutrients deficiency challenges
- Which tools to use in order to encourage the population to adopt balanced diet
Furthermore, and one week after successful participation of the Annual Congress of Cameroon Nutritional Science Society, the forum was a useful platform for the NNIA to foster “Science for better nutrition” leadership and to share the latest evidence-based scientific information and nutrition knowledge. This helped to build trust and credibility of Nestlé as the scientific leader in maternal and infant nutrition in the first 1 000 days.
Standing in front of the NNIA stand, the Minister of Public Health reiterated to the media that in Cameroon, “35% of under 5 deaths could be avoided through adequate nutrition. Therefore it is important that all stakeholder in the area of nutrition work together by implementing existing health strategies”.
NNIA activities already have a great impact on the education of HCPs (including “Train the Trainers Seminar on Management of Malnutrition”) and are reaching almost 3 000 HCPs each year in Cameroon.
We used this opportunity to inform our stakeholders of our next NNIA Symposium, scheduled to take place in November. 105 HCPs from all the regions of the country will graduate from the Post Graduate Program in Pediatric Nutrition, an initiative which will strengthen their expertise on the latest pediatric nutrition topics.