India/Bangladesh: PepsiCo Foundation announces grant to Save the Children to improve nutrition and hygiene

The PepsiCo Foundation announced [on 19 February 2009] a three-year, $5 million grant to Save the Children to help ensure the survival and well-being of children living in rural India and Bangladesh, which together are home to 40 percent of the world’s malnourished children.

With support from the PepsiCo Foundation, Save the Children will work towards decreasing newborn and child mortality and child malnutrition in these countries. Save the Children proposes to work with community health educators to provide thousands of families, who are among these countries’ poorest, with important information about health, nutrition, water, sanitation and hygiene. The [project targets] 650,000 children under the age of five, along with mothers and pregnant and lactating women in these two countries.

[…] In India, Save the Children will work through community health groups to decrease newborn and child mortality and malnutrition by increasing use of health services, improving nutrition and hygiene practices and expanding access to safe water and latrines. PepsiCo Foundation has earmarked 2.5 million dollar for India, and would start in [Churu, Tonk and Banswara] districts in Rajasthan. An estimated 50,000 people would be touched through water and sanitation activities across districts in Rajasthan. The programme is likely to cover 65 villages and eight urban wards in the state.

In Bangladesh, local health workers will expand treatment of the most common causes of mortality among children, treat severe malnutrition with ready-to-use food and improve hygiene and sanitation practices. Save the Children also will train families to generate income from local resources, enabling them to provide their children with a more diverse diet.

This grant builds on PepsiCo Foundation’s commitments of more than $4 million for environmental and health programs in India and Bangladesh in 2008.

Source: PepsiCo, 19 Feb 2009 ; PTI / The Hindu, 01 Mar 2009

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