Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Enhancing Preschool Children’s Diets
What's the Problem?
Children of the poor hardly get enough to eat -- let alone the proper nutrition. That's why Self-Help's feeding program is so important. We include QPM (Quality Protein Maize) in our porridge preferred cereal grain, QPM has double the usable protein as regular corn/maize. The rural poor in Nicaragua and Ghana don’t have access to sufficient levels of protein like we would in the United States ... and protein is so important for proper development of children

12 million children under the age of 5 die of malnutrition each year. Malnutrition, a gateway condition for many more serious diseases, is 100% treatable. Roughly 60% of children aged 6-months to 6-years in and around our rural feeding centers suffer from malnutrition. Effects of malnutrition in children, stunted growth, orange-tinted hair, patchy hair growth or general lethargy, are evident in the communities
What can be done? 
Since 2005, Self-Help has been conducting a feeding program featuring a once-a-day porridge meal using QPM (Quality Protein Maize). Thousands of children have beaten hunger and malnutrition because of it. Listless, glassy-eyed children are becoming increasingly active and alert. Their mothers speak highly of the progress that they see with their children. We are making a difference. But, we have always felt we could do better.
In 2009, Self-Help was introduced to an inexpensive vitamin supplement we could add to our porridge to make our meal more complete. Each tablet yields: (Percent daily values based on a 2,000 calorie diet.)

Vitamin D-3 100%             Pantothenic Acid 50%             Phosphorus 20% 
Manganese 50%                     Vitamin A 60%                    Vitamin C 100% 
Calcium 15%                               Iron 60%                          Vitamin E 50% 
Thiamine 70%                        Riboflavin 60%                        Niacin 70%
Vitamin B6 60%                        Folate 50%                        Vitamin B12 90% 
Biotin 50%                                 Iodine 50%                        Magnesium 30% 
Zinc 100%                                Copper 65%
How can I help? 
The cost for one packet which has six servings is only 10 cents! There are children who receive porridge 1,050 5-days-per-week, 48 weeks per year. That's 42,000 servings to children every year. The annual cost to serve vitamin packets in their QPM porridge is $4,200. In other words, it costs $4 per year for one child to provide vitamins, minerals and barley malt (makes the porridge thinner and sweeter). Our goal is to have a two-year supply of packets which would cost $8,400.
      * $16 feeds 4 children vitamins and minerals all year
      * $24 provides vitamins for 6 children 5x a week for a year
      * $60 purchases QPM AND vitamins for one child for an entire year
      * $2,100 buys vitamins for every child for one year that Self-Help serves
         in Ghana or Nicaragua

About Self-Help 
Self-Help is an international development organization based in Waverly, Iowa dedicated to helping people help themselves. Since 1959, it has helped tens of thousands of the world's poorest people win the battle with hunger, malnutrition and poverty.
Self-Help is a 501 (c)(3) designation so donations may be tax deductible.
703 Second Ave NW, Waverly, IA 50677

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