Q: Why does child matter? How and why does this still happen today?

A: Child malnutrition matters because it hurts their cognitive functions and contributes to poverty by impeding people’s ability to lead productive lives. Poverty is the leading cause of hunger, but poverty also results from hunger, in a cyclical relationship. In spite of the importance of childhood nutrition and significant progress in the last 25 years, global childhood hunger is still rampant. Please see the Cycle of Hunger info graphic #3 (right) above and The Poverty Cycle graphic below.

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In general, what are some children mortality facts & numbers?

Overall, 5.6 million children under age five died in 2016, nearly 15,000 daily (World Health Organization [WHO], 2016).

The risk of a child dying before five years of age is highest in Africa (76.5 per 1000 live births), about 8 times higher than in Europe (9.6 per 1000 live births) (WHO, 2016).

Approximately how many children die annually from malnutrition?

Approximately 3.1 million children die from malnutrition each year (UNICEF, 2018a).

Hunger and malnutrition contribute to more than half of global child deaths, as malnutrition can make children more vulnerable to illness and exacerbate disease (UNICEF, 2018a).

What are the other costs related to children & malnutrition?

Children who are poorly nourished suffer up to 160 days of illness each year (Glicken, M.D., 2010).

Malnutrition magnifies the effect of every disease including measles and malaria. The estimated proportions of deaths in which malnutrition is an underlying cause are roughly similar for diarrhea (61%), malaria (57%), pneumonia (52%), and measles (45%). (Black, Morris, & Bryce, 2003; Bryce et al., 2005).

Malnutrition can also be caused by diseases, such as the diseases that cause diarrhea, by reducing the body’s ability to convert into usable nutrients (Black, Morris, & Bryce, 2003; Bryce et al., 2005)

What are some of the education costs related to children & malnutrition?

66 million primary school-age children attend classes hungry across the developing world, 23 million whom live in Africa, which greatly impacts their ability to learn (World Food Programme [WFP], 2012).