|Assessment of Nutritional Status in Emergency-Affected Populations - Adolescents (UNSSCN, 2000, 24 p.)|
VISION AND MANDATE
Our long-run vision is of a world in which malnutrition is no longer a human development constraint. This is possible, but to achieve it will require decisive action at country level, supported by a coherent and coordinated international strategy, founded on human rights and providing a framework for action throughout the UN and international development finance system, implemented in close partnership with NGOs, bilaterals and governments. Nutrition needs to be made a key development priority, recognized as vital to the achievement of other social and economic goals. Good nutrition under normal conditions contributes to the prevention and mitigation of death and malnutrition in emergency situations. Good nutrition facilitates the prompt return to conditions favouring development following disasters.
The mandate of the ACC/SCN is to raise awareness of nutrition problems and mobilize commitment to solve them - at global, regional and national levels; to refine the direction, increase the scale and strengthen the coherence and impact of actions against malnutrition world wide; and to promote cooperation amongst UN agencies and partner organizations in support of national efforts to end malnutrition in this generation.
Three main areas for action have been identified: (i) Promote of harmonized approaches among the UN agencies, and between the UN agencies and governmental and non-governmental partners, for greater overall impact on malnutrition. (ii) Review the UN system response to malnutrition overall, monitor resource allocation and collate information on trends and achievements reported to specific UN bodies. (iii) Advocate and mobilize to raise awareness of nutrition issues at global, regional and country levels and mobilize accelerated action against malnutrition. These three functions are all vital and of equal importance and can be seen as a triangle, one dependent on the other.
The UN members of the ACC/SCN are the FAO, IAEA, IFAD, ILO, UN, UNAIDS, UNDP, UNEP, UNESCO, UNFPA, UNHCHR, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNRISD, UNU, WFP, WHO and the World Bank. The ADB and IFPRI are also part of this group. From the outset, representatives of bilateral donor agencies and NGOs have participated actively in SCN activities. The Secretariat is hosted by WHO in Geneva.
The SCN undertakes a range of activities to meet its mandate. Annual meetings have representation from those mentioned above as well as academia - a one-day Symposium is held during the annual meeting, focussing on a subject of current importance for policy. The SCN convenes working groups on specialized areas of nutrition; currently there are nine working groups in areas ranging from foetal and infant malnutrition, nutrition of the school aged child, and household food security to capacity building.
The SCN's reports on the world nutrition situation, published every two to three years, are authoritative sources of information to guide the international community in its nutrition work. Nutrition Policy Papers and the SCN News summarise current knowledge on selected topics. Quarterly bulletins on the nutritional status of refugees and displaced persons are also published in collaboration with a large network of NGOs.