Casa Jackson Center for Malnourished Infants

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Casa Jackson Center for Malnourished Infants

Guatemala
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Budget: 
$1 million - $5 million
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

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

The Casa Jackson Center for Malnourished Infants combats malnutrition through a multiple-approach solution. Casa Jackson treats malnourishment with in-house and out-patient care, ensures that discharged patients are returned to a stable environment through family education, holds community field clinics, and educates and empowers communities.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

The primary problem is the lack of education, resources, and access to health care. Chronic malnutrition plagues Guatemala with more frequency and severity than any other Latin American country. Estimates place the number of malnourished children under the age of five in the country at over 50%, and at 70% among indigenous people and those who live in rural areas. Almost 80% of the Guatemalan population lives in poverty, contributing further to the problem.
About You
Organization:
La Asociación Nuestros Ahijados
Visit website
Section 1: About You
First Name

Emily

Last Name

Jacobs

Website

http://La Asociación Nuestros Ahijados

Organization

La Asociación Nuestros Ahijados

Country
Section 2: About Your Organization
Organization Name

La Asociación Nuestros Ahijados

Organization Phone

011-502-7832-4678

Organization Address

Carretera a San Felipe #106 La Antigua, Guatemala

Organization Country
Your idea
Country your work focuses on
Innovation
What makes your idea unique?

The Casa Jackson approach is unique because it is based on a multi-approach solution that focuses on practical and sustainable solutions that can make a positive difference in a short period of time. These solutions are: 1. Treating acute-sever malnourishment with in-house care 2. Working with cases of chronic malnutrition through out-patient care 3. Holding field Clinics to broaden the reach of the program 4. Educating and empowering communities to take care of their own nutrition needs 5. Ensuring that patients discharged from the program return to stable and sustainable environments where they will receive proper nutrition

Do you have a patent for this idea?

Impact
What impact have you had?

Since Casa Jackson's opening in October of 2008, it has helped hundreds of Guatemalan children regain their health and go on to continue their lives as happier, healthier children. More than 150 in-patient cases of malnutrition have been rehabilitated, as well as hundreds of out-patient cases in the surrounding communities. Numerous hard to reach indigenous and rural communities have received information and education about nutrition and health care, and as a result we are building healthier communities.

Actions

Field Clinics, Community Education, In-Patient Care, Family Rehabilitation, Out-Patient Care and Monitoring.

Results

Since the opening of the Casa Jackson Center, hundreds of children have been served. Families and communities benefit greatly from the education and nutrition information they receive, and are more empowered to take their own steps to solve the problem of malnutrition in Guatemala. Children are returned to health and families are given the tools to ensure the continued growth and development of their children.

What will it take for your project to be successful over the next three years? Please address each year separately, if possible.

For the project to be successful over the next few years it needs to continue to have a large base of support from the volunteers who look after the children in the Casa Jackson home. These volunteers (an average of 4-5 a day) feed the children(they are fed every 2 hours), play with and engage the children contributing to their continued development, assist and support the nurses, and help with cleaning and preparation. They are essential to long-term success. Additionally, monetary support from donors is needed to be able to pay the Casa Jackson staff of 9, and the "guias," or social workers, who conduct the Field Clinics and monitor cases. The Casa Jackson project has so far been solely funded by donations. Each of the next three years, requires the same support for success.

What would prevent your project from being a success?

The lack of funds or lack of volunteer interest could hinder the success of the Casa Jackson project. Because the project runs on year-to-year donations and has no pledged grants or support, this is always a concern.

How many people will your project serve annually?

101‐1000

What is the average monthly household income in your target community, in US Dollars?

$50 - 100

Does your project seek to have an impact on public policy?

Sustainability
What stage is your project in?

Operating for less than a year

In what country?
Is your initiative connected to an established organization?

Yes

If yes, provide organization name.

La Asociación Nuestros Ahijados

How long has this organization been operating?

More than 5 years

Does your organization have a Board of Directors or an Advisory Board?

Yes

Does your organization have any non-monetary partnerships with NGOs?

Yes

Does your organization have any non-monetary partnerships with businesses?

Yes

Does your organization have any non-monetary partnerships with government?

Yes

Please tell us more about how these partnerships are critical to the success of your innovation.

Our partnerships are essential to the success of Casa Jackson because in order to function efficiently and achieve the goals, support from the community is required. Local businesses provide the project with donations of food. Other partners, such as Direct Relief International, help with monitoring out-patient malnourished children in the surrounding communities. It is essential to have parternships with others striving to achieve the same goals in order to operate most efficiently and effectively.

What are the three most important actions needed to grow your initiative or organization?

The most important action to implement at this stage, is to increase funding for the social work aspect of the program. Right now, only one social worker is in charge of investigating and helping the up to twenty families of the in-patient children, as well as monitoring the over 100 out-patient children and families. Hiring another social worker would better provide these services and lessen the work load allowing for more diligent and personal monitoring. Additonally, it is essential to expand the micro-finance program for families so more children can benefit from increased family income. Community outreach is another area that can be expanded to increase the number of field clinics held each year. This year there were eight different field clinic initiatives, the goal for next year is to coordinate twelve field clinics, one each month. The field clinics currently reach populations up to three hours away from San Felipe, ideally it will expand up to five hours from Casa Jackson.

The Story
What was the defining moment that led you to this innovation?

La Asociación Nuestros Ahijados is a large organization that provides services in education, health care, trafficking in persons and exploitation, and basic shelter. For many years it was supporting area malnutrition centers through volunteers and funding. Although the work these centers are doing is essential, they are not operating as efficiently as they could be. After the children were rehabilitated, they often returned to the same conditions that contributed to malnourishment in the first place. These traditional centers did not reach out to the community to address the core issues. There is no family or community support to ensure the success of rehabilitated children, or prevent new cases. It became increasingly clear that to only treat the symptoms was not effective. Instead, every factor needs to be evaluated and addressed directly to eradicate malnutrition.

Tell us about the social innovator behind this idea.

Many social innovators were involved in the creation of Casa Jackson and its unique approach to the problem of malnutrition. Its founders had the depth of vision to identify the multiple contributing factors to malnutrition and endeavor to cure the system as a whole. They created an innovative and unique malnutrition center that would not only treat the symptoms (malnourished children) but also the underlying causes of malnutrition.

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