Today, we celebrate World Health Day.
At Convoy of Hope, we help children and families become healthier around the world. Our work starts with a meal, but includes providing children with clean water, deworming pills, and hygiene lessons to work with new moms on how to best feed and take care of their children.
We believe you can’t improve a child’s health without improving his or her nutritional status, and that’s why our driving passion to feed the world is synonymous with one to improve overall health. Since malnutrition is an underlying cause of 45% of all child deaths, the meals we distribute help reduce childhood mortality in some of the world’s poorest countries.
While the meal is critical, we also know that if a child is sick, they will not be able to absorb all of the nutrients — creating a negative cycle that’s hard to break. For example, a child can’t stay well-nourished if they’re drinking dirty water that causes diarrhea. That’s why our field staff work hard to make sure there is clean water for the children to drink. We’ve also started distributing deworming pills to children in areas where intestinal parasites are prevalent. These low-cost pills increase a child’s ability to absorb and utilize nutrients.
Today reminds of the six months I spent in Haiti where I was confronted with the effects of poor health on a daily basis. One of my tasks was to work with the local health director to ramp up nutrition and hygiene lessons in the schools. This required many hours in the office crafting schedules and developing lesson plans, but I am honored to be part of creating a healthier and happier world for nearly 150,000 children. We invite you to celebrate along with us. Happy World Health Day!