Pakistan’s ambitious ‘Ehsaas’ program collaborates with Facebook to connect malnutrition experts with digital marketers

Design Hackathon’ will help connect experts in malnutrition with digital marketers, with support from Facebook, it will help build digital campaigns around the specific challenges of malnutrition.

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On Saturday, the Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on Social Protection and Poverty Alleviation Dr. Sania Nishtar stressed that there are other measures that should be adopted other than a balanced diet to tackle malnutrition in Pakistan. She said that breastfeeding, sanitation, and washing hands can also contribute to decreasing malnutrition across the country.

While talking at the launch of a partnership with Facebook, named ‘Design Hackathon’ she discussed how to counter malnutrition, which isn’t only because of lack of resources and poverty, but also changing lifestyle and eating habits.

‘Design Hackathon’ will help connect experts in malnutrition with digital marketers, with support from Facebook, it will help build digital campaigns around the specific challenges of malnutrition.

The digital campaign, which is approved by the Ehsaas Poverty Alleviation Programme, will run on Facebook without any cost. It will create and spread awareness about malnutrition and connect those who need help with those who can help.

Pakistan’s fight against stunting, malnutrition:

Dr. Nishtar, while talking at the event, said that the campaigns had to be related to Pakistan culturally, she added that measures suggested by professionals to counter malnutrition were out of the financial reach of ordinary citizens.

“To fight malnutrition today, we need 21st-century tools such as digital marketing techniques on social media that can reach wide audiences”, Dr. Nishtar said.

“We recognize millions of children in Pakistan suffer a range of health and development consequences due to malnutrition in all its forms, and that is why we have made malnutrition a top priority area of the Ehsaas program.”

As per her, stunting, chronic diseases, and obesity were linked closely with each other. In the hackathon, 10 teams will work together to develop campaign solutions and designs that can be further developed and implemented as the original content of the ‘Ehsaas Programme’ on Facebook.
Through the hackathon, participants will profit from industry- expert mentors that will guide the participants in a range of necessary skills, in impact assessment, pitching, and budgeting.

On the last day of the program, three teams will be shortlisted to present their ideas to a panel of leaders from the Ministry of Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety Division, along with representatives from the World Bank.

The winning team will get advertisement credits and support from Facebook to launch their malnutrition campaign on the platform.
With this, the Ehsaas program will be able to reach more people across Pakistan since a big amount of people use Facebook.

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