The new leadership team of the Mozambique Initiative (MI) was voted in by Missouri United Methodists in June of this year during our Annual Conference meetings. We have a completely stellar group of people who are stoked to begin a brand new chapter of this ministry!! Since this time, we have been working feverishly to dream big and envision what the next four years of our work in Mozambique should look like.
One of the interesting projects that is potentially on the horizon is a connection with Project Peanut Butter (PPB). PPB is a local, St. Louis based organization started by a pediatrician and researcher at Wash U. This guy cooked up an amazing new formula to treat severe malnutrition, and PPB is now saving lives all over Africa. The stats are actually amazing. In literally 4-6 weeks, 95% of children completely recover from severe malnutrition using this ready-to-use therapeutic food. The project plant is based in Malawi, Africa, which borders Mozambique.
As you probably know, malnutrition is a huge issue in Mozambique. And we see a great potential connection between this local project and the needs related to hunger in Mozambique. UNICEF estimates that 44% of children suffer form chronic malnutrition, and 18% of children under five are underweight in Mozambique. The problems are worse in the Northern part of Mozambique, which is much less developed.
The MI leadership team will visit the PPB plant in October of this year during our upcoming visit, and will be in discussion with the PPB team about how we might start a program such as this in Mozambique. We have meetings scheduled with the Ministry of Health in Mozambique to discuss our findings and talk about ways that this might be implemented.
What are your thoughts? Are you as excited about this opportunity as I am?!?
You might want to "like" PPB on facebook and stay tuned to the MI on facebook about ways that you can help to foster this connection!
And also: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8MDNFaGfT4