As the year 2013 comes to an end, and as our project nears its funding goal, I just wanted to take a moment to thank you for your incredible outpouring of support, which has humbled all of us at Edesia. I also wanted to share with you what our nonprofit factory in Providence, Rhode Island has achieved on behalf of severely malnourished children in the Horn of Africa over the past few years.
Since, 2010 we have produced and shipped out 109,267 boxes of Plumpy’Nut to our humanitarian partners in the region. This is enough to fully treat 109,267 severely malnourished children in about seven weeks. It's incredible to consider, but just one $53 box of Plumpy'Nut gives back the gift of one child's life.
Even though our project is closing, we are not scaling back our efforts in the Horn of Africa or throughout the other regions of the world where childhood malnutrition rates are alarmingly high. There are over 19 million children suffering from severe acute malnutrition in our world who have yet to be reached. Our factory will continue to make Plumpy'Nut for as long as it is needed.
We appreciate your helping hands joining with ours, so that we could stretch ourselves a little farther to help as many malnourished children as possible through this project. We hope that you'll stay in contact with us through Facebook or Twitter or simply by visiting our website.
With warm regards,
Yesterday was World Humanitarian Day. It is a time to recognize those who face danger and adversity in order to help others. Since the summer of 2011, we have been sending thousands of boxes of Plumpy'Nut to the Horn of Africa region. Even though we don't know all of their names, we are so grateful to all of the humanitarian workers on the ground in this region that make the miracle of treatment with Plumpy'Nut possible.
Two years after the height of the famine crisis, the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reports that, in the Horn of Africa, there have been some improvements in overall food security, livelihoods and the nutrition situation, but thousands of children remain in urgent need of life-saving interventions such as Plumpy'Nut - which is why we continue our work here at the factory in Providence, Rhode Island.
Thank you for your commitment to humanitarian causes. You are helping transform the lives of those who are starting out with so little.
I just wanted to send a brief update - from our Providence, Rhode Island factory - to let you know that 48,000 boxes of Plumpy'Nut are to be shipped from our warehouse to Ethiopia from now until October. This is enough of our peanut-based, therapeutic food to reach as many as 48,000 children suffering from severe acute malnutrition. Everyone who works at Edesia feels grateful to be part of the manufacturing process that helps get Plumpy'Nut into the hands of children - through our humanitarian partners on the ground, who are on the frontlines of saving young lives every day.
It's interesting to note that Ethiopia, in the heart of the Horn of Africa, has made remarkable progress over recent years in reducing child mortality rates. As you can see in the attached PDF document, in 1990, some 198 children out of 1,000 in Ethiopia died before the age of five. In 2011, that number dropped to 77, and progress continues. We like to think that stronger community-based health and nutrition programs, which include therapeutic foods like Plumpy'Nut, are indeed helping and having an impact.
A heartfelt thank you, from all of us at Edesia, for your continued support of our project that is helping give children and families health and hope.
"Since she started eating the peanut paste, she has improved." Nimon Ahmed, Nadjma's mother
In January 2013, from our Providence, Rhode Island facility, we made well over 1,000,000 pounds of peanut-based, nutritious Ready-to-Use Food to treat or prevent childhood malnutrition all over the world. From our side, this looks like 38,571 cartons, which are sealed, loaded into containers, taken to port, and shipped overseas. From the other side, where the red and white Plumpy'Nut boxes are received by humanitarian organizations like UNICEF, these boxes contain a miracle in waiting for thousands of young children suffering from severe acute malnutrition.
For today, I wanted to share with you a recent video posted by UNICEF Somalia that perfectly illustrates how Plumpy'Nut is an integral part of a community-based approach to solving the problem of childhood malnutrition in developing countries. I think you'll especially love seeing little Nadjma on her mother's hip, pink-cheeked and healthy after two months of eating Plumpy'Nut.
Together we are turning the tragedy of childhood malnutrition into a story of hope for little girls like Nadjma and for millions of other children in our world. Thank you so much for your continued support!
"The situation was very bad ... If these children did not get immediate help, they would have died. We are thankful and appreciate the assistance that came through to help the children. Although there is need of continuous support so that these children do not get sick again." Aden Mahdi, Program Manager for SAACID.
As mainstream media updates from the Horn of Africa become more scarce, I wanted to share with you a new UNICEF video (see link below) about the situation in Somalia. It shows how Plumpy'Nut is still playing a vital role in saving the lives of children in this poor and struggling country - and how Plumpy'Nut is part of a larger solution to reduce childhood malnutrition. At the community health center, children receive Plumpy'Nut, vaccinations, antibiotics, and mothers are educated about breastfeeding and keeping a healthy home. This integrated approach is the key to lowering childhood malnutrition rates.
The video also highlights that last year during the height of the famine crisis, 30% of children in Somalia were severely malnourished, in danger of losing their lives. Now, that percentage has dropped by half to 16%. This is great progress, but that is still a very high number as compared to global standards. And, as we can all imagine, behind that percentage number, there remain thousands of children with infinite promise who need Plumpy'Nut to survive.
When I walk around our warehouse in Providence, Rhode Island, I do not see boxes of Plumpy'Nut stacked on pallets ready for shipment, but the possibility of miracles and chances at life waiting to happen. It is awe-inspiring and humbling all at once.
Your generosity to this project has inspired all of us at Edesia, which is why I wanted to also take this moment to thank you again for your continued support of our work.
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