Question NW1813 to the Minister of Social Development

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11 July 2023 - NW1813

Profile picture: Sukers, Ms ME

Sukers, Ms ME to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)What percentage of (a) the population consumes less than 21 000 kilocalories each day and (b) children suffer from acute malnutrition in the Republic; (2) what total number of (a) adults and (b) children die of hunger each day; (3) what programmes and/or plans are in place to address the terrible crisis in both (a) major cities and (b) rural areas; (4) whether any programmes and/or plans have been rolled out to combat child hunger, malnutrition and undernutrition; if not, why not; if so, (a)(i) what programmes and (ii) where have they been rolled out and (b) what results have been gathered from the programmes?


(1)(2)(3) The Department of Health monitors Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) and Moderate Acute Malnutrition (MAM) cases through the National Health Information Management System. The member is advised to refer the question to the relevant Ministry of Health.

(4) South Africa has developed and implements an integrated and comprehensive National Food and Nutrition Security Plan for South Africa, which holistically addresses food and nutrition issues, focusing on the pre-conception period, the first 1000 days of life, Early Childhood Development, and appropriate feeding of vulnerable children in poor schools (quantile 1–3).

The Food Security and Nutrition Plan for South Africa reflects a common vision across government departments, with a unified goal, objectives, indicators and targets for monitoring progress. Under this plan various programmes under Strategic Objective 4, which relates to “Scaling up of high impact nutrition specific interventions targeting nutritionally vulnerable groups across the life cycle” are implemented.

This is to enable the country to address problems such as hunger, malnutrition and micronutrient deficiencies that affect physical growth and cognitive development, especially among children, as directed by the National Food and Nutrition Security Policy.

The Department implements targeted social protection measures, which includes the provision of nutrition support services to the poor and vulnerable groups. Furthermore, social grants are paid in line with the social assistance act, 2004 (Act No. 13 of 2004) to alleviate the plight of most impoverished and vulnerable people in the country. More than 60 % expenditure on grants is used to buy food and this assist many households to not go to bed hungry.

DSD has Centre based feeding programmes most registered and funded as NPOs that support vulnerable groups through nutrition support and provide other psychosocial services as well. These includes Community Nutrition and Development Centres (CNDCs), Home Community Based Care Centres (HCBCs, Luncheon Clubs (LCs) etc.

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