1000 Day Journey: Program and Partners
1000 Day Journey, is a new development program led by World Vision, implemented together with expert organizations, monitored by academics and funded by the Government of Canada. The program launched in 2016 and will run for five years in Bangladesh, Kenya, Myanmar, Pakistan and Tanzania.
Across the five countries, World Vision is working to ensure mothers and their children get proper nutrition in the first 1000 days of their lives, from conception to their second birthday. Although these five countries contain just 6.8 per cent of the world’s population, they are home to 13 per cent of the world’s children under age 5 who suffer from stunting, caused by lack of nutrition.
The overall goal of this program is to reduce deaths of mothers and children in the targeted regions of the five countries. Most deaths in the critical first 1,000 days could be prevented through relatively simple and cost effective solutions like regular pre-natal check-ups, clean birthing kits, exclusive breast feeding, monitoring baby’s growth, and immunization. Below, we’ve listed the three main focus areas with some of the activities you will see in the program.
- Improved delivery of gender-sensitive health services
- Build local health workers technical knowledge and skills
- Increase local health facilities’ capacity to deliver essential health services
- Train workers on gathering and analyzing critical data to improve services
- Increased consumption of nutritious foods and micronutrients by mothers and young children
- Educate on nutrition and dietary diversification
- Support home gardens and bio-fortified crops
- Distribute micronutrient powders to children under five
- More gender-sensitive health policies and governance
- Facilitate dialogue among men and women on equity in health decisions
- Increase understanding of women and children’s health issues in the five countries and in Canada
Like all government-funded development initiatives, World Vision entered a competitive process in order to win funding for its 1000 Day Journey program. What helped build our case is the fact that we have existing programming in the five countries. This means we have staff and resources already in place to start the work. But we also brought in key partners with expertise in particular areas
Government of Canada
Consortium partner delivering essential micronutrient programming and advocacy
University of Toronto’s Dalla Lana School of Public Health
Independently monitoring and evaluation of project impacts and results
CSIH (Canadian Society for International Health)
Improving health management in Tanzania
A unique feature of this project is how 1000 Day Journey deliberately invites Canadians in to the five year adventure, as it unfolds. There will be opportunities for interaction with those on the ground. Simply sign up or follow us on Facebook to remain in touch.
Why it Matters
In a 2013 series, the highly respected health journal, The Lancet, called maternal and child nutrition “a massive, unfinished agenda.” We know how to address nutrition in a child’s first days in low cost and effective ways. Yet too many children remain unreached – with serious consequences.
Currently, some 165 million children with stunted growth (as a result of poor nutrition in the first 1000 days) must go through life with permanently compromised cognitive and physical development. And then there are the 3 million children who die before their fifth birthday due to undernutrition each year. Babies have the best chance of surviving and thriving with healthy moms.The impact of poor nutrition early in life is cyclical, as poor and undernourished mothers give birth to underweight children or struggle to provide nutritious food for their families. The Lancet noted yet broader implications as countries “are not able to break out of poverty and sustain economic advances without ensuring that their populations are adequately nourished.”
Canada: a leader in maternal and child health
Canada has played a global leadership role in women and children’s health: committing significant funds, hosting major conferences and encouraging other countries to pledge. Yet few Canadians know this.
Canada’s aid program had been supporting women and children for years, but it became a focal point in 2010, when Canada used a G8 summit to launch the Muskoka Initiative on maternal, newborn and child health. Since then the focus has continued and evolved.
- 2010: Canada commits $2.85 billion over five years (2010-2015) through the Muskoka Initiative for maternal newborn and child health. 100 percent of the funding has been disbursed.
- 2010 to today: Canada is a key supporter of the UN’s Every Woman Every Child, a movement to mobilize resources globally around the major health challenges of women and children
- 2014: Canada hosts a global summit on women and children’s health and commits an additional $3.5 billion; 1000 Day Journey is part of this funding
- 2016 to present: Canada restates it commitment to women and children’s health, with additional focus on supporting women and adolescents’ reproductive health rights
- Today: Canada and others are committed to reaching the UN Sustainable Development Goals, including the Goal 3 target of ending preventable deaths of newborns and children under age 5.