Children's growth focus of new money for Marshall Islands

2:21 pm on 7 December 2018

Poor growth in Marshallese children has prompted President Hilda Heine to seek assistance from the World Bank which has responded with a $USD12million Early Childhood Development grant.

Hilda Heine, President of the Marshall Islands, addresses the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly at the UN headquarters in New York on September 22, 2016.

Hilda Heine Photo: DOMINICK REUTER / AFP

The World Bank's vice president for East Asia and the Pacific said a third of all children in the Marshall Islands are malnourished, with the issue becoming critical as it has flow on effects to learning and can lead to a life long poverty trap.

Victoria Kwakwa has recently visited the Marshalls and says the agency aims to have a lasting positive impact.

"The focus is really on addressing childhood stunting and nutrition and helping the early development of children, stimulation, access to good health services, so that the children have the best start that they can have. And a better chance to grow into productive adults."

Victoria Kwakwa said the Bank is also supporting the Marshalls with clean energy, internet connectivity, climate resilience and maritime operations.