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Since 2015, Nutrition International’s Nutrition Technical Assistance Mechanism (NTEAM) has provided technical assistance to 17 Scaling Up Nutrition countries in Africa and Asia through the Technical Assistance for Nutrition (TAN) project, funded with UK aid from the UK government. As this funding window comes to its programmed end, we’ve taken a look back at the project’s achievements and lessons learned to shape our future technical assistance offerings.

Over the last six and a half years, Nutrition International designed and delivered 68 strategic technical assistance engagements, including:

  • The development of national nutrition plans, or major components of them, for eight countries
  • The costing of the national nutrition plans of nine countries
  • The development of domestic resource mobilization strategies in two countries
  • Quick and intensive support for the development of COVID-19 response plans for several countries
  • Combining strategic influence with technical assistance to leverage CDN $745M in five countries

Nutrition International’s TAN project consistently performed well, receiving an “A” rating in all Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office annual reviews of the project. We also undertook three progress assessments (FY 2018-18, 2019-20, and 2020-21) to measure the performance of 21 technical assistance engagements after completion. The results revealed significant contributions to improved country-level outcomes on scale, coordination, quality, effectiveness, capability, capacity and gender equality in nutrition policies and programs.

For example, during the 2020-21 progress assessment, a key informant in Ethiopia stated: TA support in the development of the woreda based plan that specifically focuses on food and nutrition also helped to improve quality of nutrition services and interventions such as [growth monitoring and promotion], [iron and folic acid], nutrition screening and treatment interventions.

These assessments helped us learn and prioritize drivers of effective technical assistance, identify areas of continuing need in Africa and Asia, and ultimately understand how to strengthen technical assistance delivery in the future.

At the 2021 Nutrition for Growth summit in Tokyo, national governments, development organizations, businesses, and young people committed to ending malnutrition in all its forms by 2030. These commitments to scale up nutrition will rely heavily on national leadership and capacity, and technical assistance will be essential to quickly support and strengthen systems and people to achieve these targets.

Nutrition International urges governments and organizations not to delay in seeking nutrition technical assistance and calls for increased funding for the provision of technical assistance. Together, we can deliver measurable actions to achieve countries’ 2030 commitments.