Protecting Milk Supply to Pastoralist Children: Good Practice from the Milk Matters Project in Ethiopia
This technical brief provides an overview of Milk Matters, how it was designed, and the results achieved. The brief summarizes the key lessons from the project and discusses the need for further testing of the approach in other countries. The brief also asks whether Milk Matters might be used to reduce chronic malnutrition or stunting.
In mid-2008 workers from Save the Children and Tufts University in Ethiopia came together to try to better understand and address the longstanding problem of acute malnutrition in pastoralist children.With funding from the US Office for Foreign Disaster Assistance, the Milk Matters project was started and worked with Somali pastoralists in Ethiopia to design and test new approaches for preventing wasting. Central to the approach was recognition of the seasonality of food access in pastoralist areas, and the high nutritional value of animal milk. It was also known that the long dry season was the critical period in terms of the risk of acute child malnutrition, due to declining access to milk at this time