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Elgeyo Marakwet County, KENYA — In a significant move towards achieving gender equality and improving the health and nutrition of adolescent girls across the country, the Realizing Gender Equality, Attitudinal Change and Transformative Systems in Nutrition (REACTS-IN) project was officially launched in Kenya on May 29th, 2024. The initiative, led by World Vision in collaboration with partners including Nutrition International, Harvest Plus and McGill University, targets 109,000 adolescents with weekly iron and folic acid supplementation (WIFAS) and gender-sensitive nutrition education.

A woman gives a speech to a crowd

“Through integrated, multisecotr interventions that address the key determinants of nutrition and gender equality, [REACTS-IN] aims to reclaim the nutrition gains lost in recent years.

—Martha Nyagaya, Country Director for Kenya, Nutrition International


Initiated through an agreement signed with Global Affairs Canada in May 2023 and followed by a partnership agreement between World Vision Canada and Nutrition International in November 2023, REACTS-IN aligns with Canada’s commitment to global health and Nutrition International’s vision of a world free from malnutrition, where everyone can reach their full potential.

During the launch event, distinguished guest of honor, H.E. Wisley Rotich, Governor of Elgeyo Marakwet, along with county leadership, including the county assembly, pledged their unwavering support to the project, particularly emphasizing the critical issue of teenage pregnancies across the nation.

A group of people stand in a front of a table with food on it
Event attendees participated in a nutrition education demonstration, where they learned about the importance of consuming a varied and balanced diet.

As the project rolls out, Nutrition International will focus on strengthening the delivery of equitable, gender-responsive adolescent health and nutrition services. This includes providing nutrition education to both boys and girls, as well as WIFAS for adolescent girls to reduce anaemia. Additionally, Nutrition International will support the development of costed anaemia action plans to address the multifaceted, context-specific causes of anaemia.

The launch of REACTS-IN signifies more than just a project launch, it represents a pivotal step towards a healthier, more equitable future for Kenya’s youth. Through education, supplementation and a commitment to addressing gender-specific issues, the initiative is set to transform the nutrition landscape for thousands of young Kenyans, enabling them to grow, thrive and realize their full potential.

A group of adolescent girls and boys standing in a semi-circle
Adolescents from Kamosor Secondary School delivered a presentation on the importance of good nutrition during the launch event.

The event was attended by H.E. Wisley Rotich, Governor of Elgeyo Marakwet, along with numerous development partners, county officials, religious and political leaders, adolescents from various schools and community health promoters who delivered presentations reinforcing the core nutrition messages of the project.

Learn more about the REACTS-IN project and Nutrition International’s work to improve the health and nutrition of women, adolescent girls and children in Kenya.