Tag Archives: Edesia

Yogathon helps Edesia fight world hunger

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URI students save the lives of 85 children and counting

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St. Patrick’s Day Plumpy’Nut Challenge takes off

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Students Think Plumpy’Nut Challenge Can Match Ice Bucket

We all remember the Ice Bucket Challenge from last summer and its amazing success, raising money for research to cure ALS. What if that same spirit could be used to save children from starvation around the world?

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Interview: URI students with a plan to end child hunger

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How Santa began a Food for Peace movement

The U.S. military took part in a special mission during the holidays of 1953. It was called “Operation Reindeer.”

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Runner Gives Holiday Gift of Plumpy’Nut to Starving Children

A mother attends to her severely malnourished child at an inpatient feeding centre in Mao, Chad. Plumpy’Nut is used to treat this potentially deadly condition (UNICEF Chad/2011/ Esteve)

Elizabeth Paff, a College of Mount St. Joseph (Ohio) student, yesterday finished two weeks of running to raise donations of close to 600 meals of Plumpy’Nut for starving children. Plumpy’Nut is a peanut paste used to feed small children who suffer severe malnutrition and need life-saving intervention.

The donations were sent to Edesia, a non-profit organization that produces Plumpy’Nut and is making the food currently for malnourished children in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Chad.

Heidi Reed, the Communications Manager for Edesia, says, “We are so grateful for Elizabeth Paff for keeping up the fight, the awareness, and the funding to help save the lives of severely malnourished children. Every dollar raised brings us closer to a world where more children are given a chance at life.”

For every minute Paff ran over the last 2 weeks a donation was made equivalent to the cost of 1 package of Plumpy’nut (33 cents). For the last couple of runs the donation size was increased to 1 dollar for each minute run. Paff completed a 47 minute run on Friday adding to the total reported on the Cincinnati Enquirer web site earlier in the day.

Paff is a member of the Leadership Pathways program at the Mount and graduated from Oak Hills High School in Cincinnati. She also has forthcoming publications related to global hunger and has been quoted in the Buffalo News.

Readers are encouraged to send matching donations as a holiday gift to Edesia at www.edesiaglobal.org. Even a donation of one dollar can buy 3 meals of Plumpy’Nut.

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Running to Save Children from Deadly Malnutrition

A mother attends to her severely malnourished child at an inpatient feeding centre in Mao, Chad. Plumpy'Nut is used to treat this potentially deadly condition (UNICEF Chad/2011/ Esteve)

A mother attends to her severely malnourished child at an inpatient feeding centre in Mao, Chad. Plumpy’Nut is used to treat this potentially deadly condition (UNICEF Chad/2011/ Esteve)

Recently, I wrote about how you can raise money to fight global hunger by running and using the Charity Miles app. My fellow writer and runner, Elizabeth Paff, is joining in on this mission with a slightly different spin.

Elizabeth (Biz) is going to run and raise money for a food called Plumpy’Nut that saves the lives of starving children around the world. For every minute Biz runs through December 14, I will make a donation to Edesia, a non-profit organization that produces the Plumpy’Nut.

Each donation will buy a Plumpy’Nut meal (about 33 cents) which consists of a peanut paste fortified with crucial nutrients for children under the age of five. Without these nutrients small children can suffer lasting physical and mental damage.

Plumpy’Nut (as well as its variations like Plumpy’Sup) are currently being used in emergencies such as the conflicts in Syria, South Sudan, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Plumpy’Nut, which comes in a packet, is a food that can be easily distributed in these dangerous areas as it requires no refrigeration or preparation. In crisis areas there is a race against time to reach the hungry and especially the smallest children as they are the most vulnerable.

When the massive famine and drought struck East Africa last year it was Plumpy’Nut that saved many lives. When famine threatened the Sahel region of Africa this year Plumpy’Nut was again called into action. Edesia, which was recently featured on New England’s Chronicle TV show, produces Plumpy’Nut for aid groups like the World Food Programme, UNICEF, and others to use in the field.

Biz is a member of the Leadership Pathways program at the College of Mount St. Joseph, and is an activist fighting hunger. She will log her miles at Mount St. Joseph’s indoor track. I hope others will sponsor her running too and make the donations to Edesia as I am. This will make an inspired holiday gift. I am already counting her runs both Tuesday and Wednesday of 40 minutes each to the tally. So please join in.

Visit Edesia’s website.

Article first published as Running to Save Children from Deadly Malnutrition on Blogcritics.

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Special Food Can Save Malnourished Children in Yemen

If enough packets of supplementary plumpy are brought to Yemen it can allievate much of the child malnutrition ongoing there. The plumpy is easy to store since it requires no refrigeration and packets are ready to eat. (photo courtesy of Plumpyfield)

UNICEF Yemen is reporting stunting rates among children at 71.4 percent in the Rayma governorate of central Yemen. Children who are stunted by lack of nutrition fail to reach expected height and weight for their age.

Another UNICEF survey revealed global acute malnutrition rates among children in the Lahj governorate of southern Yemen at 23 percent. Children who suffer this malnutrition have lasting physical and mental damage unless they are treated.

Child malnutrition is severe throughout Yemen. UNICEF says, “967,000 children suffer from acute malnutrition. In certain areas of the country, the acute malnutrition rate exceeds 30 per cent, twice the emergency threshold.” Until this crisis is alleviated Yemen will not be able to gain stability for its future. The question is, what action can be taken?

A full supply of supplementary plumpy (plumpy’sup) food for all needy children in Yemen would provide the nation with a break from the malnutrition storm. Supplementary plumpy, and plumpy’doz, are peanut pastes designed to keep children from falling into the most severe levels of malnutrition. When children reach the most desperate stage of malnutrition they are generally fed life-saving plumpy’nut. Yemen needs a supply of plumpy’nut too to treat the most severe malnutrition cases.

But if the rest of the child population at risk of malnutrition can be reached with supplementary plumpy you can prevent this last resort.

Dr. Wisam Al-timimi of UNICEF Yemen says, “Supplementary plumpy is the 1st stage to treat the moderate cases of acute malnutrition (MAM).” UNICEF is teaming with the UN World Food Programme to increase coverage of supplementary plumpy and plumpy’doz for children under two years of age.

Navyn Salem of Edesia, which produces Plumpy’Nut and Plumpy’Sup, says it’s a “good strategy” to treat children ahead of time with Plumpy’Sup to prevent their dangerous descent into severe malnutrition. Salem says it “costs less and it is of course better for the children to be reached sooner than later.”

Funding, though, will be an obstacle, as donations are needed so UNICEF, WFP, and other aid agencies can get the necessary supplies. These agencies rely completely on voluntary donations which are often hard to get even though food aid is relatively inexpensive.

Both WFP and UNICEF are limited in plumpy supply due to funding constraints. As of last month UNICEF Yemen only had 30 percent of the funding it needed for a $24 million program to fight child malnutrition. With extra funding they would increase the defenses against child malnutrition.

Support from governments and the public would go a long way toward stabilizing the country and preventing a generation of children from being damaged from malnutrition in the first thousand days of life.

UNICEF Yemen has a relief fund that the public can use to contribute funds to the relief effort. The UNICEF programs needs more support. Susannah Masur of UNICEF USA says “it’s been very difficult to raise money for the nutrition crisis in Yemen.”

The public can also contact the UN World Food Programme and ask about direct donation to their operation in Yemen. Governments can work with UNICEF and WFP and provide donations to make sure they have the resources on the ground to help all the children in Yemen.

Article first published as Special Food Can Save Malnourished Children in Yemen on Blogcritics.

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This Christmas Feed a Silent Guest and End World Hunger

The Providence-based Edesia will be making plumpy'nut this Christmas Eve to feed malnourished children in Chad (photo courtesy of Edesia)

Imagine if every person gave a gift this Christmas to a “silent guest,” one of the world’s hungry. During Christmas 1947, Americans did just that, continuing the successful “silent guest” program started in Thanksgiving of that year by a former aspiring actress named Iris Gabriel.

People imagined a “silent guest” at their holiday meal, and donated the cost of the imaginary food plate to buy a CARE package. These packages fed many thousands in countries overseas rebuilding from World War II.

This Christmas Eve a company called Edesia will be making packages of plumpy’nut to send to the African nation of Chad. Food is out of reach for the many poor in Chad, a country where drought and conflict have taken their toll. The smallest children pay the heaviest price unless the outside world intervenes with foods like plumpy’nut.

Plumpy’nut is a special package of food that saves infants from succumbing to dangerous malnutrition. There is no more important gift these children can receive.

Edesia accepts donations so you can help them fill this plumpy’nut order to Chad.One dollar actually buys several little packages, or sachets, of plumpy. Their plant has also produced this peanut paste for East Africa, Yemen, Guatemala, Haiti and Pakistan. Aid agencies like the World Food Programme, UNICEF and others distribute the plumpy’nut in these countries.You can make “silent guest” donations to these organizations at their respective web sites.

There are also ways you can feed a silent guest simply by playing on your computer. If you play the online game Free Rice, 10 grains of rice are donated to the hungry every time you get a correct answer. The rice is paid for by advertisers on the site.

There are many ways you can give a holiday gift to a silent guest at your holiday celebration. Happy Holidays!

See also Commentary in the San Francisco Chronicle: What you can do today to help end world hunger.

Article first published as This Christmas Feed a Silent Guest and End World Hunger on Blogcritics.

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