Fight Hunger Foundation

Focus: Health, Children and Youth

THE name of this organisation says it all: theirs is a battle against severe acute malnutrition which is killing one child every minute in India – one of the fastest growing economies in the world.

But, the Foundation strongly believe it is a war that can be won.

Take little Sheela*, who at eight months should have been crawling on the floor, laughing, giggling, crying – all normal growth milestones.

Instead, in October 2016, when Fight Hunger Foundation found her, she was in distress and pain but could not cry or even express her suffering. Having lost her appetite to acute malnutrition, baby Sheela lay listless, unable to move her hands and legs, her frail body barely able holding the weight of her ballooning belly.

As daily wage labourers Sheela’s parents, from Palghar, Maharashtra, could not afford to lose a day’s pay to take their child to the health centre - causing her to sink into a critical condition.

FHF staff persuaded the couple to take their daughter to the foundation’s therapeutic treatment centre, where she received medical attention and care and started recovering. Since then, besides frequent visits and follow-ups, they have trained Sheela’s parents to adopt appropriate nutrition practices to ensure the little girl recuperates fully.

Sheela is just one of 42,000 malnourished children who has received life-saving treatment from FHF.

There are six million children under the age of five years in India, who are acutely malnourished. Their risk of dying due to hunger is 11 times more than that of a normal child. Fight Hunger Foundation is one of the few NGOs in India specifically focusing on the detection, treatment and prevention of acute malnutrition in children.

Their programmes emphasise on preventive measures by raising awareness within the community about childcare practices, and training frontline staff to identify children in danger and immediately refer them to the nutrition rehabilitation centres.

They screen about 10,000 tots every month and have trained nearly 1,000 accredited social health activists, anganwadi workers and health workers on identifying malnutrition and its treatment, reaching out to over three lakh people in areas they work in.

Access to food is a basic human right that 23million children under six years of age in India do not have. Join forces with Fight Hunger Foundation and support them to end this curable and preventable malaise.

* Name changed

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THE Foundation have teamed up with national and international partners who collectively wish to put an end to infant deaths due to malnutrition. They call on governments both in India and across the world, urging them to take action and prioritise the fight against this preventable malaise and save the lives of millions of children that die of hunger every year. FHF believe that with strong political initiatives, a world that is free from child deaths due to malnutrition is possible.

Comprehensive Nutrition Mission

FHF work closely with community health workers towards improving the standards of malnutrition management and detecting its onset. They interact with staff in hospitals and in their nutrition rehabilitation centres and train them to administer effective treatment. The Foundation has not only helped reduce the percentage of malnourished children, but has also provided adequate training and education to families to help them understand the early signs of malnutrition and its prevention.

Mental health and care practices

THE fight against hunger can only be won by adopting proven methods of treatment and providing quality healthcare at both the family and community level. This is what FHF strive to achieve – to raise awareness and educate families on the need for improved infant and child feeding practices, along with psychosocial care and support for both the parent and offspring. This approach takes into cognisance the well-known proverb: ‘prevention is better than cure’.

About Fight Hunger Foundation

Rajasthan gave a fantastic model of Community based Management of Acute Malnutrition and Action Against Hunger/ Fight Hunger Foundation have to be credited for that. As a result now Rajasthan is planning for Phase 2 with 16,500 children in 20 districts.

Naveen Jain, Director, National Health Mission Rajasthan

They (Action Against Hunger & Fight Hunger Foundation) are locally grounded and globally connected. They are working on a micro, meso and macro level in the country.

Basanta Kumar Kar, CEO, The Coalition of Food and Nutrition Security, New Delhi

Of the 10,000 children that were enrolled, 9,600 were reported recovered. Such scale of the programme was possible only because of the partners who came forward to join hands with the department of Health and Family Welfare [including FHF]

Meenakshi Singh, UNICEF, Jaipur

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