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Better nutrition changes lives and entire economies

A healthy intake of vitamins and minerals - ideally through a balanced diet - is essential for small children to develop their cognitive, physical and social capabilities.

In Guatemala, 1 in 2 children under five does not get these essential vitamins and minerals. Among indigenous children, the statistic is a whopping 8 out of 10.

Small children who do not get essential micronutrients over a longer period of time become stunted and sentenced to a life of underachievement: first, diminished performance in school; later, lower productivity and wages, more health problems throughout life, and a greater risk for chronic illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease. Infant chronic malnutrition is a nation-wide health emergency.

But perhaps the greatest cost of malnutrition and stunting are immeasurable:

A poem not written. A song not sung. (...) An idea not formed. An inspiration not shared. (...) A cure not discovered. A kindness not done.

What might a child have contributed to the world if he or she hadn’t been stunted in the 1,000 days? A lost chance at greatness is a lost chance for all.
— Roger Thurow, Autor of The First 1,000 Days
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So, our mission is to get small children all the essential vitamins and minerals they need.

With Maní+, we saw a tremendous change in the development of small children. Mothers reported that their children became less sick, then stronger and more active, and some even recuperated their faltering growth.

Today, we are building on this proven approach and are working hard to create scalable solutions for systemic impact.

 
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Families are the solution to chronic malnutrition

We optimize our products based on what we learned from Maní+, the input of families living in rural Guatemala, NGOs active in health and nutrition, and the Institute of Nutrition of Central America and Panama.

Many regions in rural Guatemala are food deserts where the large majority of families lives in poverty or extreme poverty. Therefore, we want all our products to be “LISTO” (span. smart, ready) to eat so that caretakers don't have to buy expensive firewood to cook the product or dilute the product in an effort to make it last longer (thus diminishing the nutritional content).

All products will be highly affordable and, in the medium term, accessible in all mom and pop stores throughout the country.

Impact Measurement

Measuring the progress against chronic malnutrition is highly complex.

In the past, we have merely assessed height-for-age and number of children fed as a proxy, but we would like to amplify our data collection and encourage a discussion of what success looks like to build a path towards systemic impact.

However, what we do know with certainty is that we cannot do it alone. So, we welcome all help, big or small, corporate, institutional, or private.

Together, we can help children grow to their full potential and enjoy lives with more opportunities, and in doing so help build a more just and prosperous society.

“If you want to shape the future, to truly improve the world, we have 1,000 days to do it, mother by mother, child by child.”
— Roger Thurow - Author of The First 1,000 Days