Creating Young Leaders in Nutrition: The Graduation

The Uganda Nutrition Fellowship (UNF), a programme implemented by the USAID-funded Food and Nutrition Technical Assistance III Project (FANTA), recently produced its second round of graduates. The UNF took on 12 fresh graduates with Bachelor’s degrees in nutrition and food science and attached them to 9 host organizations. Eleven of the twelve fellows graduated with one stopping midway since her host organisation fully employed her. The host organizations included Mwanamugimu Nutrition Unit, World Vision, USAID|Communication for Healthy Communities (CHC), USAID|Community Connector, Ministry of Health (MoH), International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN), USAID- funded Strengthening Partnerships, Results, and Innovations in Nutrition Globally (SPRING), Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) and FANTA.

The fellowship ran from April 2015 to September 2016, a total of 18 months. During this period, the fellows were actively involved in the host organization’s activities such as hands-on management of malnutrition, developing communication messages, engaging the community in health issues, developing policy and advocacy materials, implementing projects, organizing and conducting workshops, among others. In addition to this, the fellows completed online courses in nutrition sensitive agriculture, management of acute malnutrition, infant and young child feeding; which widened their scope of learning beyond the activities of their host organizations. And because of the myriad of activities they were involved in, the fellows were equipped with a great mix of skills including leadership, organizational behavior, communication and management among others. One of the requirements for the fellows to graduate was to develop a project. The projects were developed to address any identified gap at the host organizations or come up with an innovation that could improve the efficacy of systems at the host organisation, and were done in close mentorship with the supervisors and mentors; which further added to their learning.

Uganda Action for Nutrition (UGAN) Society is proud to note that three of the fellows are UGAN Members: Miss Nabunya Phoebe who was attached to Mwanamugimu Nutrition Unit; Miss Apio Benardate Okiria who was with USAID|Community Connector Project in Lira and Ms. Lydia Pedun Aisu who was attached to USAID|Communication for Healthy Communities. Lydia and Bernadate stole the spotlight on the graduation day by taking second and third place for most outstanding project respectively (a round of applause for them).

Kudos to the Fellows!

Captions from the Graduation

written by Phoebe M. Nabunya & Tracy L. Birungi