Canada announces $84.6-million contribution to fight global malnutrition and prevent acute malnutrition

News release

May 26, 2023 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

Climate change and the rising cost of food have contributed to a rise in malnutrition rates, with the heaviest burden falling on the most vulnerable, especially women and girls.

To mark World Nutrition Day on May 28, the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada, today announced $84.6 million in funding to support the implementation of four new projects by Canadian partners, including Action Against Hunger, Children Believe, SickKids Centre for Global Child Health and World Vision Canada.

This contribution is part of Canada’s $520-million commitment for nutrition-specific programming over five years, as well as its landmark 10-year investment in global health and rights.

Canada remains at the forefront of delivering nutrition programs to help fight malnutrition. In the last year alone, our partners reached more than 754,000 women and adolescent girls with nutrition services around the world.

As a global leader on nutrition, Canada remains committed to reducing the burden of malnutrition on the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people, especially for women and girls, by 2030 in line with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.


“Ending malnutrition is essential to improving and saving lives. Proper nutrition at the right time can mean the difference for a child learning in school, a girl pursuing her dreams in good health, or a woman participating fully in her work and community. Together, we can make a difference in the lives of the poorest and most vulnerable, in particular, women and girls.”

- Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada

“Ending malnutrition starts with supporting women and girls. By investing in women's and girls’ health, education, and livelihoods, we invest in a better future for generations to come. We are proud to work with the Government of Canada to promote gender equality and empower women and girls with the resources they deserve to nourish themselves and their families.”

- Onome Ako, CEO for Action Against Hunger Canada

“Children Believe is thrilled to partner with Global Affairs Canada to implement the Championing Nutrition and Gender Equality (CHANGE) project. This work is critically important because gender discrimination and malnutrition are closely linked. No one should go to bed hungry, but all too often it is women and girls in particular who eat both the last and the least in their families. This compromises their and their families’ health, their education and their futures. It is time for all of that to change.”

- Fred Witteveen, CEO for Children Believe

“The SickKids Centre for Global Child Health is excited and honoured to support Canada’s efforts to improve the nutritional health of vulnerable populations around the world, especially children and their families. As we are living through a most challenging era, coping with major climate changes, food shortages and inflation, and post-COVID recovery, focusing on WASH programming is essential for optimal health and well-being. We look forward to working with our partners in Canada, Ghana, Malawi and Pakistan to strengthen sustainable institutional capacity and to strive toward SickKids' vision: Healthier Children. A Better World.”

- Dr. Stanley Zlotkin, Chief, SickKids Centre for Global Child Health

“At this critical time of worsening hunger crises, World Vision is grateful for the continued generous support from the Government of Canada. We are excited to be working in partnership with other development organizations and are committed to further improve nutrition for the most vulnerable and to enable communities to thrive.”  

- Michael Messenger, President and CEO for World Vision Canada

Quick facts

  • Malnutrition affects at least one out of three people worldwide, but its impacts are disproportionately faced by women and girls.

  • Malnutrition rates are rising due to the food security crisis:

    • 45.4 million children are acutely malnourished
    • 149.2 million children are stunted
    • more than 50% of preschool aged children and two-thirds of non-pregnant women of reproductive age worldwide are micronutrient deficient
  • During the Tokyo Nutrition for Growth Summit in December 2021, Canada committed $520 million in nutrition-specific programming over five years.

  • The 10-Year Commitment to Global Health and Rights is Canada’s largest and longest financial commitment in international development assistance. Through this commitment Canada will reach an average of $1.4 billion annually by fiscal year 2023-2024, with $700 million going to sexual and reproductive health and rights and maintain these levels to 2030.

  • In its first year of implementation, 2020-2021, the majority of investments were directed to the Sub-Saharan Africa region (63.9%). The top ten countries receiving the most assistance in 2020–2021 were in Africa and Asia.

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Haley Hodgson
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of International Development

Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada
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