SANI (Southern Africa Nutrition Initiative)
Publication Date: 02/07/2021
The Southern Africa Nutrition Initiative (SANI) is a $29,487,135 CAD project to address undernutrition in women of reproductive age (15-49) and children under 5 years in Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia. A partnership between CARE, Cuso International, Interagency Coalition on AIDS and Development (ICAD) and McGill University and the Governments and communities of implementing countries, SANI aimed to improve the nutritional status of women of reproductive age (15-49 years) and children under-5 years old. SANI was designed to align with national health and nutrition strategic priorities of Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia, and has been implemented in close collaboration with the Ministries responsible for Health, Agriculture, and Gender in each country, as well as national and district-level nutrition coordination committees (NCC and DNCC). Between June 2016 and March 2021, SANI contributed directly to the improved health of 234,000 women, children and men directly and over 498,000 individuals indirectly.
This final report covers the implementation period of the original SANI contribution agreement and project implementation plan finalized in February 2017.
Key project achievements:
Outcome 1100 aimed to improve nutrition practices and services for women of reproductive age, boys, and girls under 5 by strengthening the delivery of community-based nutrition services at the intersection between community health and the health system. Growth Monitoring and Promotion (GMP) and Community Management of Acute Malnutrition (CMAM) programs built this link, working on the continuum of prevention of malnutrition and early detection and treatment of moderate and severe acute malnutrition. Training and support on Maternal, Infant, and Young Child Nutrition (MIYCN), CMAM, and GMP was provided to health service workers and community health workers, and Care groups were established to support families to learn about and apply gender-sensitive MIYCN practices. Interactive teaching was also done at scale through participatory education theatre and cooking demonstrations using local nutritious foods. Social Analysis and Action (SAA) dialogues encouraged families involved in the program to identify, discuss, and challenge traditional social norms and practices that affect women’s health, nutrition, and empowerment.
Endline data revealed the following increases in nutrition-specific indicators from baseline:
- All three countries had considerable increases in rates of exclusive breastfeeding of children up to 5 months, increasing by 15-percentage points in Zambia (from 70% to 85%), 25- percentage points in Malawi (from 61% to 86%) and 17-percentage points in Mozambique (from 65% to 82%)
- Minimum Acceptable Diet (MAD) for children 6 to 23 months increased by 24-percentage points for boys and girls in Malawi (from 7% to 31%) and in Zambia by 7-percentage points for boys (from 24% to 31%) and by 13-percentage points for girls (from 17% to 30%)
- Knowledge of men and women on MIYCN practices improved by 6-percentage points for men (from 79% to 85%) and 4 percentage points for women in Malawi (from 90% to 94%), by 12- percentage points among women (from 59% to 71%) in Mozambique, and by 11-percentage points for women (from 81% to 92%) and 14-percentage points for men (from 72% to 86%) in Zambia.