Ecuador: Improving Food and Nutrition Security in Santa Elena

Published on 17 May 2012

Projects like the "Amiguitos a Jugar" day care center in Santa Elena were visited by WFP Representative in Ecuador, Deborah Hines.(Copyright: WFP/Katherine Shea)

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) will support the Autonomous Decentralized the Government of the Province of Santa Elena by strengthening their capabilities to help people improve their food and nutrition security. To this end, an agreement was signed at the provincial government headquarters in Santa Elena.

LA LIBERTAD-WFP and the Government of St. Elena plan to implement a innovative nutritional model, with a comprehensive approach that will seek to diversify family diet and with nutritious products, and to link small farmers with local markets to improve incomes.

Factors such as access to clean water, deworming, good diet and higher incomes,improve food security and nutrition among vulnerable families.

This project will help combat anemia (iron deficiency) in vulnerable groups, especially children and women. "Poverty puts children under 5 at risk for malnutrition. In Santa Elena, anemia at this age reaches 78 percent in Colonche and Simón Bolívar," said Deborah Hines, WFP Representative in Ecuador. She added: "We must improve the family diet to ensure a proper, nutritious and healthy diet. Together we can improve the lives of children and families of small producers."

Meanwhile, the prefect of Santa Elena, Patricio Cisneros, said: "It is important to work together to achieve positive results in the fight against malnutrition and unmet basic needs. One of our responsibilities is to seek international support and sign agreements like this one, which surely benefit many of Santa Elena’s families. Thanks to WFP for trusting us and helping us lead our children to good nutrition."
WFP works in Ecuador in coordination with the national government and local governments in food and nutrition security initiatives, nutrition training, assistance to vulnerable groups with an emphasis on women, climate change adaptation and preparedness and response to emergencies, such as the one currently affecting the country.