Reducing MalnutritionEn Français
HKI is proud to support the "Thousand Days Movement" and pledges to give malnutrition the absolute priority it deserves and to support early childhood malnutrition interventions that result in real and measureable impacts that are sustainable.
- One-third of all child deaths are related to undernutrition, which kills a child every ten seconds – more than HIV, tuberculosis and malaria combined.
- Nearly two billion people suffer from malnutrition caused by a lack of basic nutrients in their food. Malnutrition stunts both physical and mental health, causes blindness.
- Exacerbated by a widening food crisis, the numbers of people suffering from the effects of malnutrition are staggering:
- Malnutrition affects billions of children and adults in the developing world. It is the single biggest contributor to child mortality, and is implicated in the deaths of almost 10,000 children under five years of age every day.
- Hundreds of thousands of children go blind and even die each year because they lack adequate amounts of vitamin A in the food they eat.
- Helen Keller International’s pioneering work in the 1970’s revealed the connection between vitamin A deficiency (VAD) and child survival. We collaborated in the groundbreaking research that first identified that controlling VAD not only can prevent a lifetime of darkness, but can also result in a 25% reduction in child mortality.
- Our work with vitamin A led us to expand our efforts to also address the life-threatening role played by the lack of other micronutrients in the diets of people living in developing countries. Deficiencies in iron and zinc, for example, can negatively impact the health, growth and survival of children, including their educational performance and immunity to illnesses, and the health and pregnancies of affected women.
What HKI Is Doing
At Helen Keller International, we dedicate ourselves to reducing malnutrition by providing low-cost vitamin and mineral supplements to millions of the most hard-to-reach, deeply vulnerable people around the world, and by encouraging people and communities to make simple and inexpensive changes to their food production and consumption that collectively result in saving the sight and lives of millions of people worldwide.
- Helen Keller International’s Vitamin A Supplementation program has helped reverse the devastation caused by vitamin A deficiency. Last year alone, HKI helped deliver over 85 million capsules to save the sight and lives of children in Africa and Asia by providing them twice-yearly treatments of vitamin A at a cost of just $1.00 per child per year.
- HKI's Homestead Food Production creates nutritional self-sufficiency for small communities in Africa and Asia-Pacific through the establishment of thousands of women-tended Homestead Food Production gardens. The program created 190,000 jobs last year for women in poorer households in the rural areas of Bangladesh, Nepal, Cambodia and the Philippines.
- Helen Keller International’s Food Fortification and Biofortification programs provide communities and families with more nutritious foods, enabling people to live healthier lives.
- In response to Niger’s food crisis in 2005, HKI began to integrate programs for Managing Acute Malnutrition, using the community-based management of acute malnutrition (CMAM) model, into ongoing child survival and malnutrition prevention programs. This program has since been expanded to Burkina Faso and Mali.
- Helen Keller International’s nutrition programs operate within the Essential Nutrition Actions (ENA) framework, which is designed to deliver an integrated package of cost-effective nutrition actions proven to reduce maternal and child under-nutrition and associated mortality and morbidity.
These programs result in preventing malnutrition and improving the lives of millions of the world’s most vulnerable people.
- Program Locations
- Burkina Faso
- Côte d'Ivoire
- Democratic Republic of Congo
- Sierra Leone
- Recent News
- Nutrition Takes Center Stage
- Nutrition Advocate for West Africa Urges Urgent Action at the UN General Assembly
- Cape Verde ex-leader lobbies for W.Africa nutrition