Sustainable Nutrition Manual

The second edition of the Sustainable Nutrition Manual was endorsed by Malawi’s Agriculture Technology Clearing Committee (ATCC) and can now be downloaded at:

Link to 2016 Sustainable Nutrition Manual (second edition)

You can also download the presentation I gave to the ATCC through the link.  After the presentation I took part in the discussion until a decision was made. It was a very positive discussion around permaculture as a design tool that puts multiple sustainable technologies together into a system, which is often the missing piece in Malawi.

There is only a large version available at the moment (ideal for printing). We are working on smaller online versions with active document links, posters, infographics and brochures and eventually a facilitator’s manual with updated handouts that were part of the first version.

Enjoy using it – share your experiences back with us as guided in the manual to: the Ministry of Agriculture, the funders (WFP), the author (Stacia) and/or on the social media sites highlighted in the manual.

History of the Manual

July 2015… Revisions done

Three years later, the revised manual is in my hands thanks to the hard work of Sarah Beare, myself and an extra set of eyes from Eileen Brownlow.  Ministry of Agriculture and WFP are reviewing it for final approvals before I can upload it here.

In July 2012… Revision begins

A diverse group of us who have been using the manual during the past 6 years sat together to discuss feedback from the surveys, to share our experiences and to deliberate the best ways to improve the manual.

There was a nice mix of people in our group:

  • 10 men and 9 women;
  • 7 government, 7 non-government organisations, 3 international government partners, 1 faith based organisation and 1 nutrition student;
  • 3 National policy & programme, 2 University, 3 District and 11 directly supporting communities.

A4 poster 03 current and better mealsNow I’m working to implement those changes by:Improving the flow and presentation of the information, besides the surveys, I’ve gotten a lot of hints from Robin Williams’ Non-Designers Design Manual, http://www.peachpit.com/title/0321534042

  • Providing more details on implementation with more visual aids (working with Artist Sarah Beare), with more sharing about success and overcoming challenges, and more practical steps
  • Changing the title to reflect the manual better – it is more than low input, it is is about getting MORE out of less.  As I revise and rethink I hope the name will pop into my head, right now the group suggested, the Sustainable Food & Nutrition Manual:  Growing & Eating More Using Less
  • And, bits and pieces of other useful ideas that people shared from their use of the manual – the feedback has been really incredible, thank you!

In 2005…

Stacia worked with the World Food Prgramme (WFP) in Malawi to help assist relief and donor agencies to look beyond food aid and start focusing on sustainable food programmes.  As food insecurity and malnutrition have become chronic problems in Malawi, so too have shipments of food aid (usually in the form of maize).  In many instances of extreme shortages or disasters, this type of aid can mean the difference between life and death, but even in these situations it remains only a temporary solution.  The true solutions to Malawi’s food and nutrition problems lie with the people themselves and the agricultural systems that they are using to feed themselves.  In response to these problems, and the call by many for a more sustainable future for Malawi, Stacia worked with a team of people to compile the Low Input Food and Nutrition Manual…Growing and Eating More Using Less.  This manual is a culmination of the work that she and her husband, Kristof, have done over their years in Malawi on the issues of nutrition and sustainable living (notably, Permaculture).

Users

The manual is being used by partners in Malawi, the region and the world that work in health, agriculture, education and general community development in sites such as Clinics, Nutritional Rehabilitation Units, Early Childhood Centres, Schools, Colleges and various Food Security, Nutrition and HIV support programmes.    Many development workers wrote to us about using the manual in their own lives to eat better and grow more food more easily.

Share freely!

About 10,000 copies of the manual have been printed in Malawi. We encourage organizations and individuals to print and use their own copies as needed, there is no copyright as long as you are sharing freely / at cost.   It is one of the main principles of Permaculture, “Observe, Learn, and SHARE!”.  We would like to get this information out to as many people and groups as we can who are interested in applying Permaculture principles to their lives and in their work.