Hurricane Matthew hit Haiti on October 4, 2016, and devastated homes, harvests, and infrastructure. The Governmental Directorate of Civil Protection (DPC) of Haiti confirmed that 75% of the population was affected, with more than 546 deaths and 438 injured. A total of 1.4 million people required humanitarian assistance, including 546,000 women of reproductive age and 112,500 children under five. In some affected communities, up to 100% of harvests were destroyed by the hurricane, threatening household food security. The World Food Program (WFP) announced that there were nearly 806,000 people at extreme levels of food insecurity due to the impact of the hurricane. This, coupled with water supply shortages and cholera epidemics, increased the risk of disease and malnutrition, especially in children under 2 years of age.
The GNC TST was requested to help design the Infant and Young Child Feeding in Emergency (IYCF-E) response by assessing priority needs and strengthening the capacity of nutrition stakeholders to deliver the response.
A powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake and tropical depression hit Haiti in August 2021, exacerbating the already fragile situation due to gang-related displacement, food insecurity, and climate shocks. The earthquake caused a death toll of more than 2200 with a lot more missing. On top of that, Tropical depression Grace triggered floods affecting more than 500 homes and delaying humanitarian response in some regions. Before the crisis, breastfeeding in Haiti was already poor with only 40% of children exclusively breastfed and during the earthquake, children lost their mothers and were at risk of death requiring urgent interventions. The nutrition cluster identified several interventions to promote children's nutrition such as management of non-optimal infants and young child feeding, no untargeted breast milk substitute, identifying and targeting infants under 6 months who are not breastfed, and lipid-based nutrition supplementation.
There was a lack of capacity in Haiti to support the Infant and Young Child Feeding in Emergency (IYCF-E) solutions as such the nutrition cluster in collaboration with UNICEF requested GNC Technical Support.
Haitian Concorde for Food and Nutrition Security (CHSAN)
CHSAN is a local Haitian organization, developed by young people in 2006, in response to Hurricane Mattiew in the southwest of Haiti, Grande Anse Department. Apart from activities and skills in agriculture and food security, CHSAN wanted to develop awareness-raising activities and promote good nutrition practices. The organization previously received training on nutrition from HHF and had some contact with TST to inquire about the technical support possibilities offered by this mechanism. CHSAN had experience in developing radio programs for their activities which could have been so used to promote nutrition activities. However, CHSAN was not in contact with the nutrition humanitarian partners to get nutrition information and support. CHSAN had a project with the Haitian Health Foundation which had components of promoting nutrition during the 1000 days of child growth. ever, CHSAN had no experience in conducting nutrition projects, especially IYCF-E.
CHSAN required technical support in conducting nutrition promotion as such they requested Tech RRT. This experience would help the organization to design nutrition programs and strengthen collaboration with big organizations working in the same field.
Supported setting the HHF project focusing on nutrition promotion
Conducted IYCF-E training
Save the Children
Following the earthquake in August 2021, the humanitarian situation worsened in Haiti. This coupled with food insecurity and climate change, the humanitarian need was increasing. The GNC Technical Support Team previously provided support that focused on establishing and scaling up the IYCF-U response, including setting up the IYCF-U Technical Working Group with an action plan, updating the Support Space Guidelines (NBCP), providing immediate technical support on the management of artificially fed infants. This phase of support is aimed at capacitating the nutrition sector coordinator to transition to more recovery programming. This included the building of frontline staff, support for coordination at national and sub-national levels, information management, and technical support for the implementation of IYCF-U intervention programs.
The support requested was to support the Infant and Young Child Feeding in Emergencies (IYCF-U) program in moving from emergency response to recovery by identifying gaps and challenges in the national response, providing technical advice on SLM protocols, monitoring and reporting, and building government capacity, of the nutrition sector and its partners, during a deployment in the country.
Updated the existing protocol and tools for the management of non-breastfed infants to modify and update the national protocol process for the targeted provision of BMS.
Conducted supervision of the programming of the care of infants dependent on SLM in the departments of the Grand Sud
Conducted IYCF-U capacity assessment during the last day of the training of the trainer
Conducted a 5 days training of Trainers for 38 people including 33 women and 5 men in IYCFU