Valid Nutrition, Valid International

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Valid Nutrition, Valid International

Project Stage:
$1,000 - $10,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Having spent a great deal of time working in feeding centers and famine-stricken areas, Steve, a medical doctor, recognized that the centers established to combat malnutrition were ineffective. Steve is therefore changing the architecture of nutritional treatment by bringing treatment out to afflicted people rather than afflicted people to the treatment. By using a decentralized feeding model and orchestrating the spread of Ready to Use Therapeutic Foods, Steve is revolutionizing the way the world prevents and responds to malnutrition. With his innovation adopted by the United Nations and World Health Organization as recommended policy, Steve is expanding capacity and the ingredients to produce locally and is working to make the ready to use food—the most expensive element of the model, primarily from the cost of dairy—affordable and accessible.

About Project

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Steve Collins, a medical doctor with a doctorate in nutrition, is changing the architecture of nutritional treatment, and transforming the practices, principles, and strategy towards the care and prevention of malnutrition. Traditional centralized feeding centers – formerly the primary method for treating acutely malnourished people - are ineffectual, incubators for disease, and require extended in-patient treatment regimes that uproot lives. Steve is decentralizing treatment programs, creating many local centers, bringing treatment out to homes and villages and equipping communities with the know-how and tools to diagnose and administer their own treatment through a method called "community-based therapeutic care." He has also helped orchestrate the spread of Ready to Use Therapeutic Foods (RUTFs), a highly nutritious and portable feeding option that is locally produced and distributed, and applied as an emergency remedy as well as a preventative method against malnutrition. RUTF is an oil-based nutritional paste (in large part peanuts or corn/soya, milk powder, sugar, and vitamins and minerals) that comes in safe, contaminant-resistant packets. Steve has established the first hybrid business citizen sector organization in Ireland, coupling a for-profit company with a non-profit arm to manufacture and distribute the food source and disseminate his methods. Building on the infrastructure built by existing COs in the field, six years after initial pilots Steve's organization is has been active in thirty-five countries and his innovation has been adopted by the main United Nations organizations involved in the treatment and prevention of malnutrition (World Health Organization, UNICEF and World Food Program) as recommended policy under the name Community-based Management of Acute Malnutrition. Over twenty developing countries and the majority of governments and citizen sector organizations working in nutrition in the developing world are moving towards adoption of his model.