SPRING/Mali officially launched in December 2014 with the support of Helen Keller International (HKI). USAID/Mali tasked the project with improving the nutritional status of women and children, with a special emphasis on building resilience in the Mopti Region through the prevention and treatment of undernutrition while targeting the critical “1,000 days” of pregnancy and a child’s first two years. During the 15 months the project was operational in Mopti, the project forged important partnerships with local government institutions and implementing partners (IPs) and provided nutrition-sensitive and nutrition-specific services to over 165,723 community members. SPRING/Mali developed an integrated program and received funding from USAID’s health, economic growth, and water and sanitation sources.
Working across 20 focus communes in the Feed the Future zone of influence in the Mopti Region, SPRING utilized community platforms to promote improved agricultural practices, nutrition-sensitive agriculture practices, and key water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) behaviors to project beneficiaries. The project employed an integrated approach to ensure that community members received practical trainings and thoughtful engagement that incorporated elements of agriculture, nutrition, and WASH with social and behavior change communication.
SPRING/Mali rolled out three distinct, multi-sectoral activities: farmer nutrition schools (FNS), trainings in essential nutrition actions and essential hygiene actions (ENA/EHA), and community-led total sanitation (CLTS):
SPRING/Mali staff, in coordination with the local sanitation department, helped to establish 4,894 handwashing stations with soap and, having assessed the sanitation needs of more than 50 villages, implemented CLTS in 26 villages, ultimately certifying 20 villages open defecation free (ODF) by project’s end.