Project Factsheet
Tools for » Feeding the Children of Afghanistan Together
Project ID:00067242Description:MDGF-2008-I-AFG
MDG Achievement Fund
Start Date *: 31 Mar 2009
MDGF SP-ChildFoodSec&Nutri
End Date*: 30 Jun 2013
Country: Afghanistan Project Status: Financially Closed
  Participating Organization:   Multiple


The main objective of the Joint Programme (JP) was to deliver an integrated set of interventions to improve nutrition, food security and agriculture. The JP contributed to good governance by building local capacity and setting up coordination mechanisms with local government stakeholders. The JP directly contributed to agricultural outcomes, food security and nutritional improvements, through various interventions aimed at improving agricultural production and food diversification supporting different types of homestead food production models and by enhancing community agricultural skills.

It established the Women Agriculture Cooperative and seventeen food processing centres, which  were linked to markets. The capacity of the Cooperative was strengthened through training and  knowledge sharing experiences, as well as the provision of improved technologies. The project helped in setting up micro-gardens in selected urban areas, and trained members from the Cooperative in small-scale food processing, preservation and cooking techniques.  Among the new improved processing techniques introduced were dairy processing for making cheese and potato processing and packaging. Training on how to dry vegetable, fruits and meat through solar dehydrators was provided and together with the necessary tools and equipment to do. In this manner, the JP has contributed to increased agricultural skills, improved food and nutrition security and enhanced income opportunities. During the process it was also able to identify and address existing gaps, such as the lack of capacity building outside the capital, and the need for female staff at MAIL (Ministry of Agriculture, Integration and Livestock) able to assist women and women’s organizations in the social context.

The programme also supported capacity building of health staff, including community health workers on Growth Monitoring and Promotion; Infant and Young Child Feeding; counseling on breastfeeding and improved complementary feeding; Community-based Management of Acute Malnutrition (CMAM). It developed packages and publications to support health staff in future expansions, and helped to strengthen the institutional framework for addressing malnutrition and chronic food security issues in an integrated and holistic manner. The JP was actively engaged in all relevant ongoing and newly-developed national plans, including the National Priority Programmes (NPPs), in this manner helping to improve communities’ access to improved health services.


Outcome 1:

Child undernutrition and household food insecurity are reduced by 2013 through the implementation of an integrated community nutrition and food security package in 10 districts (in 5 provinces).


Outcome Achievements:

  • Following the formulation of a district profile and the identification of food security and nutrition situation in each district, key stakeholders from various sectors in the province jointly developed a responsive district level action plan for each district. The district action plan served as a roadmap to implement all nutrition and food security interventions.
  • Based on the results of a capacity needs assessment, key government staff were selected from all related sectors and provided with Training of Trainers‘ on nutrition and food security. These trained trainers have provided cascade trainings to the community level.
  • Produced ten different types of information, education and communication (IEC) materials and developed 15 different training packages.
  • The school nutrition curricula is now in the hands of the MOE (Ministry of Education).
  • To improve food availability and food access at community level, the JP helped establish 891 partnerships with community organizations and institutions, including clinics, women associations, male and female agriculture cooperatives, religious organizations, and schools.
  • Supported the establishment and registration of Women Agriculture Cooperatives. The cooperative members were trained on food production, preservation and marketing; today the cooperatives function as producer groups.
  • Gardens, green houses, nurseries, plastic tunnels, and food processing and information centers were built and were handed over to interested community institutions.


Outcome 2:

Policies, strategic frameworks and institutional mechanisms supporting integrated nutrition & household food security interventions are established.


Outcome Achievements:

  • Support to recruitment of women extension officers at MAIL. Government staff is predominantly male and they cannot work with women in the social context of Afghanistan. The JP encouraged the general directorate of agriculture extension to recruit female agriculture extension workers. Based on both side agreement, six women were trained to increase their skills in agriculture, food processing, nutrition and food security. General directorate of agriculture in MAIL committed to recruiting them.
  • Work was carried out on the development of Food-based Dietary Guideline (FBDG).
  • Support to the integration of nutrition into school curricula.
  • During the programme duration, the JP provided technical support to the  following documents: Food for Life; Nutrition Action Framework; FNS Policy Statement and Strategic Framework; Afghanistan Food Security and Nutrition Agenda; Technical Review of the Food Law Draft.
  • JP increased capacity of government staff at provincial and district level given that in the last decade most of the resources and capacity development had been channeled to the national level with.


Best Practices:

  • Support to community organizations. The JP funded two cooperatives and two CDCs (Centers for Disese Control) in Daikundi province which helped increased capacity  and freed up resources at sub-national level.
  • Support to recruitment of women extension officers at MAIL so that women and women groups can access their services.
  • The JP identified that during the last decade most of the resources and capacity development had been channeled to the national level, JP increased capacity of government staff at provincial and district level.


Lessons Learned:

  • Proper involvement and participation of government and community organization and on time handover of project outputs (food processing centers, training materials, communication materials) is key for continuation and sustainability of the project results.
  • Joint work both at national and provincial level is essential to ensure ownership and commitment. The more government partners are involved the more ownership of the work/ activities which in turn increases government commitment.
  • Establishment of longer-term partnerships with existing community organizations is an effective way to support the community. This requires working with them, capacity building and linking them to market and related government sectors, which requires a long term support. The short duration of the project negatively affected this process.


More details can be found in the documents below.

Recent Documents
Key Figures
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If you have questions about this programme you may wish to contact the RC office in Afghanistan or the lead agency for the programme. The MPTF Office Portfolio Manager (or Country Director with Delegation of Authority) for this programme:

The person with GATEWAY access rights to upload and maintain documents for the programme:

  • Yaqub Naqshbandzada, Coordination Officer; Telephone: +93 (0) 799328763; Email:
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