TACOMA, Washington — On April 27, 2022, the House of Representatives passed the Global Malnutrition Prevention and Treatment Act (H.R. 4693) with a vote of 384-44. The bill was first introduced on July 26, 2021, by Reps. Meeks (NY-05), McCaul (TX-10), Kim (CA-39) and Houlahan (PA-06). The bill authorizes USAID to advance programs that prevent and treat malnutrition around the world, maintain multi-sectoral nutrition programs and ensure the effective use of funding for these programs.
The international community must address global hunger and malnutrition now more than ever. Globally, 690 million people endure undernourishment, including women and children. More specifically, women’s and expectant mothers’ nutritional statuses are unacceptably low in the most vulnerable countries due to various factors, such as limitations to food access and gender inequality. All the while, one in five children suffers from malnutrition and nearly 14 million more children worldwide will be severely malnourished by 2022 due to recent changing weather patterns and the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a press release, Congressman McCaul, House Foreign Affairs Committee Lead Republican and honorary board member of The Borgen Project said, “The world is facing unprecedented levels of food insecurity because of Putin’s brutal and unprovoked invasion of Ukraine and the continued impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. We must do everything we can to advance life-saving nutrition programs and combat rising malnutrition. Support for these low-cost and effective interventions means an investment in the health, development and productivity of the next generation of children around the world.”
In order to create lasting global change, it is essential to invest not only in education, health and economic empowerment but also in curbing world hunger and malnutrition, especially for women and children. Improving women’s nutrition is imperative to ending malnutrition in all its forms while providing these services and programs allows children the opportunity to contribute to their communities and become productive members of society in the future. Furthermore, for every $1 invested in global nutrition, there is an estimated $35 in economic return.
The Borgen Project would like to thank congressional leadership as well as Congressman McCaul for his support of the passage of this legislation. The organization also thanks its volunteers for their dedication and advocacy. Since the introduction of the bill, The Borgen Project volunteers and supporters have sent nearly 4,000 emails to Congress asking for support and cosponsorship. However, more work remains as the bill must now pass the Senate.
To take action during this critical time, please email your Senators to pass the Global Malnutrition Prevention and Treatment Act (S.2956) here. S.2956 was introduced by Sens. Coons (D-DE), Wicker (R-MS), Kaine (D-VA) and Boozman (R-AR) on October 7, 2021.