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Humanitarian-development nexus: nutrition programming and policy in Kenya

Author: Carmel Dolan and Jeremy Shoham
Year: 2017
Resource type: Case study

A recent ENN field-based case study in Kenya examined experiences of the humanitarian development nexus (HDN) through a nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive programming and policy lens. Kenya is on track to meet World Health Assembly nutrition targets, largely due to successful scale-up of high-impact nutrition interventions, particularly integrated management of acute malnutrition and a surge model for treatment in Kenya’s arid and semi-arid counties.

Improved risk reduction and quicker, more effective response evidenced in the 2016/17 drought response are attributable to national government growth; stronger government leadership; the Ending Drought Emergency framework; devolution; strengthened health systems; and scalable social protection systems for the most vulnerable.

Ongoing challenges include limited community mobilisation in the ‘surge’ model; variation in multi-sector collective outcomes and priority setting/contingency planning at devolved level; weak influence of nutrition in shaping high-level frameworks, design of social protection programmes; and tensions between nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive investments. The Scaling Up Nutrition Movement has not yet given rise to a multi-sector platform that gains nutrition leverage and visibility. Action is needed at global level to ensure nutrition joins the discourse around HDN.

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Carmel Dolan and Jeremy Shoham (2017). Humanitarian-development nexus: nutrition programming and policy in Kenya. www.ennonline.net/hdnkenya