End Hunger & Malnutrition
Chronic malnutrition threatens the health & development of the world’s poorest.
This can be preventable through simple, cost-effective interventions like micronutrient fortification.
Problem: Iodine Deficiency
Iodine is a crucial nutrient necessary for healthy brain development in children. Iodine deficiency is the leading preventable cause of intellectual & development disabilities in the world.
Over 2.2 billion people live in areas at risk of iodine deficiency. Iodine deficiency can lead to severe intellectual and development impairments. Poor nutrition in the first thousand days of a child’s life can stunt their growth leading to reduced school & work performance, which creates major life implications.
- Iodine deficiency can very easily be prevented by consuming salt with small amounts of iodine (i.e. iodized salt).
- Based on research from the Copenhagen Consensus, salt iodization is one of the best investment strategies in international development & there is strong evidence that it can lead to a significant, positive effect on a child’s cognitive development.
Salt iodization programs can be supported at $0.02 – $0.05 per person per year. This includes the costs to source the material & distribute to mothers & newborn infants.
Children aged 6-months to 5-years in many areas of extreme poverty are at high-risk for Vitamin A deficiency (VAD). An estimated 100,000 children die each year from VAD-related causes. This deficiency causes stunting, anemia, dry eyes (the leading cause of preventable childhood blindness) & susceptibility to infection and death. Vitamin A deficiency is due to diets that include few animal sources & little fortified food.
Vitamin A Supplementation.
- Oral vitamin A supplementation is the most widely practiced & proven approaches to control deficiency in high risk countries & areas.
- One of the most effective interventions is periodic prophylactic vitamin A supplementation to pre-school children of age 6-months to 5-years.
Vitamin A supplementation is inexpensive – generally estimated to cost around $2.46 per child per year.
Problem: Vitamin A Deficiency
Vitamin A is an essential nutrient that supports the immune, vision & reproductive systems. Trials conducted by GiveWell found that Vitamin A supplementation delivered in locations with high child mortality rates is one of the most effective ways to save & improve a child’s life.
Problem: Subsistence-Level or Low-Productivity Farming
Agriculture is the dominant profession of the world’s poor. 80% of Africa’s poor are rural farm families, trapped in a state of subsistence-level, low-productivity farming with extremely low yields.
The world’s poorest farmers lack the resources, training and/or funds necessary to increase their farm’s productivity. In many remote farming villages, basic technologies like seed and fertilizer are often unavailable. Even when available, many farm families don’t have the capital required to purchase these resources to increase productivity. Without access to agricultural best practices, farmers are struggling to optimize their farming output. Post-harvest, they face issues like inadequate storage, pest infestations, spoilage & market/government-caused fluctuations that all result in extremely low profits.
Holistically Addressing The Barriers To Small Farmer Productivity.
- Deliver thousands of tons of high-quality farm inputs within walking distance to every small farmer at an extremely affordable price – Last Mile Delivery.
- Deliver in-field training on best farming practices.
- During harvest, provide farmers with the tools & knowledge to safely store their harvest allowing them to sell during the off-season for higher profits.
- Engage governments, microfinance organization or other key agricultural actors to shape policy decisions that strengthen agricultural ecosystems.
With an average loan of $71, One Acre Fund farmers saw an average increase of 50% in farm income or $120 in incremental profit each year.
Nearly half of all deaths in children under 5-years are due to malnutrition. Micronutrient malnutrition can lead to blindness, birth defects, compromised immune systems & cognitive and developmental delays.
Cost-Effective Food Fortication Programs.
- Food fortication is one of the least expensive solutions to combat malnutrition with proven results.
- Charities work with small local mills to help fortify staple foods with the correct dosage of micronutrient premix (including iron, folic acid, B12 & zinc)
Estimates show that food fortication programs costs only $0.53 per person per year.
Problem: Micronutrient Malnutrition
Without proper nutrition, children become ill & cannot attend school. This causes the poverty trap to deepen — people become ill & vulnerable to disability or death, they cannot attend school or work, their families lose resources in order to care for them — and the cycle perpetuates.
Problem: Economic Inequality & Social Injustice
Around 700 million people worldwide live on less than $1.90 a day. Financial security, access to information & job opportunities are the foundation of sustainable economic equality. Spurring economic development by offering resources & training is the best way to help the world’s poorest break the cycle of poverty.
Economic inequality is caused by a multitude of factors for those living in extreme poverty. Lack of access to education, basic health care, inadequate food & reliable shelter — all make it very difficult for the world’s poorest to break out of the cycle of poverty. Similarly, the poor and politically disenfranchised – mostly women and girls, racial and sexual minorities – are particular vulnerable to the effects of conflicts, cultural discrimination & injustice.
- The best way to bring about real change is to implement multifaceted, broad solutions to the root causes/problems and ramifications of poverty.
- These include: long-term health & welness development, emergency & disaster relief, as well as political advocacy for sustainable change.
With low-cost solutions to target the root causes/problems that cause extreme poverty, we can make a signficant improvement to those living on less than $1.90 per day.