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What is USAID Nawiri?

Implemented in partnership with the Government of Kenya in Marsabit, Isiolo, Samburu, and Turkana Counties, the USAID Nawiri program is a five-year initiative funded by the USAID Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) to sustainably reduce persistent acute malnutrition in Kenya’s arid and semi-arid lands (ASALs). USAID Nawiri aims to help resolve the underlying causes of acute malnutrition through this integrated, multi-sectoral resilience-strengthening program that leverages ongoing emergency and development activities.

To recognize the complexity of persistent acute malnutrition in Kenya’s ASALs and the need for local, context-specific, and sustainable solutions, USAID Nawiri was designed to be implemented in two phases. The first research and learning phase has provided partners with the time, support, and access needed to explore the local drivers of persistent acute malnutrition and design interventions rooted in evidence, local contexts, community strengths and assets, and feasibility for government scale-up.

Two consortiums implement USAID Nawiri in the four ASAL counties in close partnership with local communities and the respective county governments: Catholic Relief Services in Marsabit and Isiolo counties, and Mercy Corps in Turkana and Samburu counties.

What is the USAID Nawiri Framework?

In phase 1, implementing partners carried out desk reviews, assessments, and field research between 2020 and 2023. The results and ongoing learning from program experience continue to inform the ongoing second phase, which focuses on systems-driven implementation and efforts to strengthen community and local government institutions. The USAID Nawiri Framework web-based tool captures key learning from phase 1, highlighting the drivers of and potential solutions to reducing persistent acute malnutrition in the Kenyan ASALs. USAID Advancing Nutrition co-developed this tool with BHA and Nawiri partners, adapting the nutrition conceptual framework to drylands contexts.1

Using the interactive framework, users can sort through evidence as it relates to the immediate, underlying, and basic drivers of persistent acute malnutrition in the Kenya ASALs.

1 Young H. 2020. Nutrition in Africa’s drylands: A conceptual framework for addressing acute malnutrition. A Feinstein International Center Briefing Paper. Boston: Tufts University.