The Office of Development Effectiveness
A window of opportunity
Australian aid and child undernutrition
The Australian Government's 2014 development policy identifies early childhood nutrition as 'a critical driver of better development outcomes'. Undernutrition in children between conception and two years of age can result in irreversible stunting (short stature), poor cognitive development and poor health. This ultimately affects educational attainment and future productivity and earnings. Several countries in Australia's immediate neighbourhood have stunting rates comparable to those of Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.
This evaluation finds that the Australian Government's investments generally constitute good practice. A number of recommendations are made to improve the targeting of child undernutrition (especially during the critical first 1000 days of a child's life) and the monitoring and reporting of Australia's efforts.
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