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Saturday, October 16, 2021

FAO equips Directorate of Health Promotion and Education Promoting the development of the first ever dietary guidelines for The Gambia7

14 July 2021, Banjul – The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) on 14 July presented two laptop computers, two printers and two android tablets to the Directorate of Health Promotion and Education (DHPE) under the Ministry of Health.

The assistance aims to support the development of The Gambia’s Food-based Dietary Guidelines, which will serve as the basis for a comprehensive public awareness raising and nutrition education for improved national food security and nutrition.

FAO procured the equipment through a one-year GMD14million Technical Cooperation Programme (TCP), which aims to contribute to the eradication of hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition.

Speaking at the brief handing over ceremony at the DHPE Ofice in Kotu, Mustapha Ceesay, Assistant FAO Representative and Head of Programmes reiterated the importance FAO attaches to capacity development to enhance delivery of implementing partners. He said: ‘This support aims to facilitate your work as you implement this FAO funded TCP. The work that you are doing in developing The Gambia’s Food-Based Dietary Guidelines is very important to FAO because nutrition is key to FAO’s mandate as well as national and global development agendas. This is why we did not hesitate to find ways and means to build your capacities and to facilitate your work’.

In his acceptance remarks, Modou Njai, Director, DHPE and National Focal Point for the TCP thanked FAO for the intervention describing it as apt and timely. He said: ‘We are very grateful. This assistance will greatly facilitate our work. The Food-Based Dietary Guidelines we are developing will be the best in the in African regional. We are using a participatory and inclusive approach, leaving no one behind’.

Background

More than 100 countries worldwide have developed food-based dietary guidelines that are adapted to their nutrition situation, food availability, culinary cultures and eating habits.  FAO assists Member Countries to develop, revise and implement food-based dietary guidelines and food guides in line with current scientific evidence.  June 2020, The Gambian Government through the Ministry of Health requested for a Technical Cooperation Programme (TCP) from FAO to enhance the capacities of national institutions to support the development of Food-Based Dietary Guidelines. The aim is to help address the sharp increase in diet related Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in the Country as shown by the 2018 Micronutrients survey. The Food-Based Dietary Guidelines provide evidence-based guidance and harmonized nutrition messages on the locally available and indigenous to the general public to promote healthy eating.  It will serve to guide a wide range of food and nutrition, health, agriculture and nutrition education policies and programmes; therefore representing a unique opportunity to favourably impact diets and the food system, from production to consumption.

For more information please contact:

Amadou Bah

Communications Officer

FAO Gambia

Email: [email protected]

Cell phone: +220 3513316

@FAOGambia

This news release was issued by the  FAO Gambia Office  http://www.fao.org/gambia/en

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