On 6 November 2017, UN colleagues from 40 SUN countries and seven agencies, as well as from the UN Standing Committee on Nutrition and the Global Nutrition Cluster gathered in Abidjan to unpack how the UN Network is functioning at the country level, including how (and where) it is excelling. From the discussion, it was apparent that the UN Network is acting as a point of convergence on nutrition and is increasingly valued by UN nutrition colleagues across regions. The UN Network global meeting, organized by the UN Network for SUN Secretariat, also signaled a clear shift from sensitization and discourse to action, with considerable attention devoted to exploring how the UN Network is fostering UN joint programming for accelerated nutrition results and where further support is needed.
The moment of introspection was timely, coinciding roughly four years after the formal endorsement of the UN Network for SUN and one year after the finalization of the new UN Network Strategy. The Abidjan meeting also provided a forum for UN Network colleagues to put their minds and experiences together and proactively discuss how the UN Network can be leveraged to address emerging nutrition issues, such as bridging the humanitarian-development divide and contributing to the United Nations Decade of Action on Nutrition 2016-2025 within the context of SUN. Throughout the meeting, there was an explicit focus on results, and if anyone momentarily lost sight of that, Gerda Verburg, Assistant Secretary-General, United Nations and Coordinator of the SUN Movement, reminded them in her inspiring address to the UN Network colleagues, which further elevated the energy in the room. The UN Network’s Abidjan meeting was also a prime opportunity to rally UN Network colleagues on the eve of the SUN Global Gathering, with a view to ensuring a strong UN engagement at the SUN event.
Learn more by reviewing the UN Network global meeting agenda.