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Partnering with the World Bank and Government of Lesotho to create self-sustaining nutrition services

This partnership supports the government-led initiative in Lesotho to improve the quality and assurance of its health systems. It also prioritises self-sustaining nutrition interventions within communities and health facilities.


  • UK Aid
  • World Bank
  • Government of Lesotho


  • SDG 1 - No Poverty
  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 3 - Good Health & Wellbeing
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities & Communities
  • SDG 17 - Partnership for the Goals






2020 - 2025


In 2018, the percentage of children who were considered stunted in Lesotho was 34.61%. Stunting not only has huge implications for a child’s mental and physical growth, but it also has a knock-on effect for the growth of the economy as a whole. The Government of Lesotho is therefore committed to strengthening its health systems to improve women's and children’s nutrition – recognising the vital role improved nutrition has to play in children’s health and development and to curve the rate of stunting. 

Our programme

We worked closely with the Government of Lesotho and the World Bank to co-design a programme that aims to strengthen health systems and create more robust nutrition interventions in the region. This crucially ensures the right treatment gets to children who need it the most.

The programme helps build more resilient and sustainable health systems by supporting and strengthening community-based and local health and nutrition services, government stewardship and programme management, and finally programme monitoring and evaluation to ensure continual learning and improvements.

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Programme interventions

Engaging community leaders

Establishing community leadership teams of councillors, local authorities, and chiefs to engage communities and ensure they are accountable for programme results.


Providing pregnant women and adolescents dietary supplements such as iron and folic acid.

Treatment of severe acute malnutrition

Treating children who are found to be suffering from severe acute malnutrition.

Health equipment and training

Providing health workers in maternity wards with better equipment and high-quality training.

Technical advice

Providing technical assistance to the Government Food and Nutrition Coordination office.


Progress to date


worth of resources dispersed




adolescents reached

To date, the programme has dispersed $9.95 million worth of resources. This includes over 8,000 kits of basic medical supplies and over 3,000 non-medical supply kits supplied to village health workers and local health facilities. These kits have enabled the roll-out of vital health and nutrition checks and treatment of pregnant women.

There have also been major breakthroughs in improving adolescent health and nutrition. Comprehensive sexual health education in four districts has started, with a total of 168 peer educators contracted for 36 months and trained to date. So far, nearly 6,000 adolescents have been reached through 37 adolescent clubs with health and nutrition services.

Next steps

The programme continues to work closely with Lesotho’s Ministry of Health to help improve future financing of health and nutrition activities, creating the building blocks for long-term effective health and nutrition initiatives.