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FNH 355: International Nutrition Assignment Part 2: Sanaah D
Transcript of FNH 355: International Nutrition Assignment Part 2: Sanaah D
Because donating to the World Partnership Walk is not something that requires a lot of labour or a lot time, almost anyone can do it! Simply by visiting the website, someone can pick up on 1 or 2 facts about the initiatives the AKF is developing and funding.
The simplicity of this act makes it highly accessible.
FNH 355: International Nutrition Assignment Part 2: Sanaah Dodhia - 10794121
Why did I do it?
I have a close connection with the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) who puts together the walk and programs to end global poverty. I trust this program to put my funds to good use. Through my religious duties and practices, I've been exposed to this walk since I was a child - it seemed right to donate to this cause to create self-sustainable programs to end global poverty.
What the experience was like...
This experience was much like my previous years of donating to the event or fundraising for it. Which is why I now realize what I did was not something new or something I haven't done in years past. This means that this won't have a great changing effect. Through reflecting, I realize that I need to do something that I don't already do to take a step and make a change towards ending malnutrition.
It was rewarding...
My experience of donating was rewarding because I attended the walk and saw how my money was being put to good use. The rewarding nature only came because I was aware of how my money was being used. At the walk they had a "Global Village" tent where I volunteered and we were able to share with other donors and attenders of the walk about the different initiatives that the AKF and WPW funded.
...but it was not challenging...
Donating to this cause was not challenging at all! There's two ways to see this:
1. I didn't challenge myself - which may be true. Because I didn't challenge myself to look for something unique and take on something I wasn't already doing.
2. This isn't challenging so...
What did I do?
I decided to donate a lump sum of money to the World Partnership Walk (WPW) - an organization taking steps to end global poverty. My donation this year is being put towards the theme of maternal, new born, and child health.
My donation is being used to fund projects run by the AKF Canada to create better access to facilities that are needed in developing countries and by concentrating on promoting maternal health as this years theme. As discussed in many of our lectures, maternal health is not only crucial to the mother but also the health of the child. One of the major causes of malnutrition is maternal under education and lack of nutrition (Rideout, 2014). Malnutrition is not only about food but it incorporates a variety of different factors and we must tackle a broad range of areas including health care, feeding, and caring practices for young mothers and their children (World Food Programme, 2014)
Where did my donation go?
In what way did my action affect world hunger?
Photo: Me, volunteering at the Global Village on walk day
My donation is helping give nutritional information to expecting and new mothers...
"Zarin Leqa is one of three midwives employed at the small Kallo Health Clinic in the rural north of Afghanistan. Nutritional charts and medical diagrams hang on the walls of her office, where she teaches expectant and new mothers how to care for themselves and their families" - World Partnership Walk website, 2014
My donation is providing education to children whose families cannot afford school
"Debesh Pradhan lives with his parents and younger brother in Malinchora, a rural village in northern Bangladesh. He attends a preschool run by a local organization, where he plays with his classmates and practices reading and counting. Many toys in the preschool are crafted by adults in the village." - World Partnership Walk website, 2014
My donation is helping provide safe food storage in rural areas to help economical development and diversify nutrition
"Josephina Alberta Mugogo is a farmer in Nova Zambezia, Mozambique. She and her husband built a silo made from local clay, to safely store beans and sesame. The family eats the crops and sells the surplus, which has improved their family’s nutrition as well as their income during the lean season. Before they built the silo, their crops were often destroyed by pests and rats" - World Partnership Walk website, 2014
As had been previously mentioned in part 1 of the assignment, these initiatives have been monitored throughout the years and significant impact on poverty and nutrition have been seen through reports provided by the AKF. The Microfinance Banks in rural Pakistan is providing women with loans to fund a business and training to overcome the obstacles of poverty. Results from a study by Mohammad, Janjua, & Ullah shows that all of efforts of the AKDN through the Bank helped increase women empowerment (2011). Additionally, entrepreneurship is major part of the income generation of women in rural areas where employment is limited. Increasing access to productive businesses has the possibility to increase global food production (United Nations Foundation, 2014). By increasing women empowerment and battling poverty, we're able to have a significant impact on malnutrition.
People who live in poverty, children, and pregnant or lactating mothers are at greatest risk for malnutrition, infection, and micro/macronutrient deficiency (Rideout, 2014). Through the aforementioned initiatives, there is generation of household income allowing families to purchase more nutritious food and have access to facilities such as health care. This year the World Partnership Walk has partnered with UN Women National Committee Canada because the WPW mirrored the development objectives of the committee. Together they're influencing the advance women's economic security and supporting structures for an improved standard of living for women and girls (Marketwired, 2014)
The Impact of Educating
The AKF through the World Partnership Walk is constantly creating awareness and educating individuals in developed countries to think about the impact their funds are having on the education of children around the world. Through educating children, we're enabling them to become ambassadors of their own future. By enabling children in developed as well as developing countries with strong resources to reach higher education, we're fostering knowledge that will feed back into the growth of their societies. Additionally, we have the possibility of enabling young graduates in the medical field with adequate training to be able to promote healthy child growth and development in countries that need it most (Yousafzai et al., 2014)
My Donation Receipt
As with any task there are limitations to your actions. My limitation is that this is not tangible enough and I can only see so much of how the money is being used. Additionally, the other limitation to the action is that it is not on going; it's a one time donation that I've made this year and that's only going to go so far. Reflecting on this fact always makes me think that I can only do so much to assist in ending global poverty and therefore ending malnutrition. In 2012, I took this into account and went abroad to Zambia for 3 months to make my actions direct and tangible...
My Journey in Zambia
Inspired by the work that the AKF was doing, I worked at a sport development organization called Play4All in Zambia where I assisted in creating a nutrition program in Kamatipa - a rural township outside of Kitwe - that runs to this date. The children of Kamatipa are fed "Tobwa" which is maize, water, and sugar fortified with essential micronutrients such as Vitamin A.
Photo: Me with the kids in Kamatipa trying to learn a rope game they play
Photo: The cups for serving tobwa
I MADE A DIFFERENCE!
Although my donation was minute, it surely contributed to assisting projects of the AKF. A lot of the time when you don't see your money being put to use you don't realize how effective your donation can be. But after doing my research, I've learned that each dollar counts and knowing that the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) matches our donations to a limit, makes my contribution double! Additionally, this walk in 2012 inspired me to go make a difference first hand in Zambia. Even though this difference was not made in the duration of this project, it was still a very significant difference that I made in my life time.
How did it make me feel?
Personally, these donations for me make a world of a difference. I've seen first hand how developing countries need not only these funds but funds that play a role in sustainable projects developed and kept up with by locals in the community. The feeling of knowing these projects are creating that self-sustainability is immeasurably phenomenal. Knowing that my contribution so far has not been to the extent of my ability, I want to eventually challenge myself more so to be the forefront of these projects and offer not only my money, but my knowledge, and my services to better assist in their growth and development.
Video from: World Partnership Walk, 2014
Most of the projects that the AKF has been running, I was well aware of through the volunteering in my community. I had a gist of where my money was going and I also knew what I wanted to do to help. The key thing I learned from doing this assignment is knowing that if I keep doing the regular things that I already do, I won't make a difference. By doing those things I just maintain my contribution to ending malnutrition. While maintaining the contribution is not a bad thing, it is not the best that I could be doing. Going forward, I plan on choosing to be a part of something that I haven't done before or in years past and realize that because I'm changing a part of my life, I'm affecting something else and not just maintaining it.
The most important thing I learned...
The influence of the midwifery program in Afghanistan
Research shows that the first 1000 days in a child's life are crucial and nutrition is a key factor to monitor from the time of conception (Rideout, 2014). With that being said, a large part of the initiatives must be directed towards providing mothers and newborns - most vulnerable from a nutritional point of view during the trimesters and post birth - with the nutritional information needed for adequate nutrients for both the mother and the child. A pregnant women requires special nutritional attention to have enough energy and nutrients to produce breast milk to nourish her baby (World Food Programme, 2014). The AKF trains midwifes to educate expecting mothers on how to incorporate the adequate amounts of vitamins and minerals needed for a healthy birth and production of nourished breast milk (ex. Iron, Folate, Vitamin A etc.). If a woman is malnourished before pregnancy it can result in child malnutrition, miscarriage, or maternal mortality.
Why should I do something new?
It was quite eye opening to me that everything I had been doing thus far was only maintaining what I've already been doing. Many others are doing the same thing. Through a class activity, we found that 30% of the class who planned to do something to help end malnutrition was already doing that. Candice pointed out that by doing this the world is not moving backwards but it's not moving forwards either (Rideout, 2014)! Knowing this, I wanted to have an impact in a way that I don't already.
This experience strengthened my plans to contribute my knowledge to the AKF Canada one day by going on a trip to personally assist in developing current programs and initiating new ones. Additionally, since this project provided me with insight into how doing the same thing will not allow me to move forward, I will be choosing more wisely with my food intake - something I have not been doing in the past. While I have not yet completely figured out the logistics of my food choices, I plan on experimenting what's comfortable with my income and my diet to eat more wisely. This most likely will mean removing red meat from my diet and choosing foods that have been grown organically.
Photo: Me with the kids at Kamatipa on my last day. Many of them look a lot more nourished than when I first arrived.
Moving forward to influence others
As the Director of a summer camp this year and a Girl Guide Leader, I have the power to influence youth to make the right decisions in regards to their food and their actions within the community. I plan on taking advantage of this role and incorporating sustainable programs by the UN, AKF, and World Food Programme in efforts to encourage them to take steps towards ending global malnutrition. Some of the themes include self-sustainable programs, nutritional development, our influence as a developed country, food choices, and awareness of the conditions abroad in regards to poverty, malnutrition, maternal health, access to health care, and HIV.
Market Wired. (2014). UN women national committee Canada join aga khan foundation on canada’s 30th anniversary world
partnership walk. Retrieved from http://www.marketwired.com/press-release/un-women-national-committee-canada-join-aga-khan-foundation-on-canadas-30th-anniversary-1912406.htm
Muhammad, M., Janjua, P., & Ullah, K. (2011). Impact of Village Group Financial Services on Women Empowerment and Poverty: A Case
Study of the First Micro Finance Bank Gilgit. Dialogue (1819-6462), 6(4), 382-397.
Rideout, C. (2014). Class Slides [Lecture notes]. Retrieved from https://www.elearning.ubc.ca
United Nations Foundation. (2013). Women, Girls, and Population. Retrieved from: http://www.unfoundation.org/what-we-do/issues/
World Partnership Walk. (2014). Your dollars at work. Retrieved from http://www.worldpartnershipwalk.com/en/get-fundraising/
World Food Programme. (2014). Nutrition for mothers and young children. Retrieved from http://www.wfp.org/nutrition/mothers-
World Partnership Walk. (2014, May 8). Breaking the Cycle of Poverty: Healthier Mothers, Healthier Children [Video File]. Retrieved
from https://www.youtube.com/watch?list=PLg-J5Q6kvhga4Ycrk -CUZWcSPlHtGtwVB&v=6VXQuMNOad4
Yousafzai, A. K., Rasheed, M. A., Daelmans, B., Manji, S., Arnold, C., Lingam, R., & ... Lucas, J. E. (2014). Capacity building in the health
sector to improve care for child nutrition and development. Annals Of The New York Academy Of Sciences, 1308(1), 172-182. doi:10.1111/nyas.12322.
Photo: The children and myself at Play4All Kamatipa holding a Canadian frisbee