At some point in your life, you must decide to do something.
It is this nagging thought, this recognition of true need, this belief in humanity, this faith in the goodness of many, that precipitated my recent journey to Lusaka, Zambia in Africa.
And it is THIS credo that has driven one organization to commit to tackling the very real epidemic of global childhood malnutrition.
I have joined them. Here’s why:
It is one thing to hear the stats from the World Health Organization (WHO) -that children who don’t receive the proper nutrition by the age of five can suffer serious health consequences, as their brains and bodies don’t develop as they should leaving them forever behind both physically and in their capacity to learn and grow- it is yet another thing entirely to meet the families who are valiantly battling this very thing.
My hope is to be your eyes and ears in this part of the world – to share what is being done and, yes, what you can do as well – even without sitting among the families.
I did sit in this room…A room many families traveled hours on foot to visit.
In many cases, that answer had been no, but Amway™ and its Nutrilite™ Power of 5 Campaign are making great strides, one child, one family at a time. As the largest vitamin distributor in the world, Amway provides a micronutrient supplement to families with great need in five different areas around Lusaka (as well as ten other countries around the world.)
This micronutrient is mixed with a child’s food once a day in order to provide the nutrition they need.
For my new friend Abigail and her family, this need, this base lack in nutrition, has been reality.
While Abigail perched on my lap, held my hand, hugged my neck and imprinted her world in my heart, I learned more about her story. Her love is pure, kindling itself in trust, having faith that I am here as her friend.
(photo credit: Amway)
Abigail, at ten, is the oldest child in her family. Her sister Lillian is eight, while twins John and Marie are nearly four. Her mother is blind and her father, Jonathan is a man I have featured before. This mother and father know the pain of losing a child to malnutrition and are incredibly grateful to have been benefitting from the Power of 5 for a few years now, allowing them to witness their children grow and thrive each month.
They have no guarantee of food.
They have no guarantee of clean water.
They have no guarantee of electricity.
They have no guarantee of education.
And yet, they are among the most open-hearted, welcoming and loving people I’ve ever met. Despite the lack of guarantees, they are flourishing with the help of Amway and the Power of 5.
In this country, 40 percent of the children are stunted – a direct result of malnutrition. But that cycle is changing.
I was there to witness what it looks like when someone, somewhere chooses to do something.
It means these glorious triplet girls have a healthy future.
The Power of 5 is in 11 countries with a recent commitment to the UN to expand even more – reaching 20 countries by 2019. Reaching this goal means the lives of nearly half a million children and their families will be improved.
I’m going to be here, watching, supporting, sharing and doing everything I can to see them reach that milestone.
I know it isn’t always possible to donate (it would be extraordinary if you could), but you can help simply by spreading the word.
I’d be so grateful if you would.
Thank you, from deep in my heart, for joining me on this journey.
Disclosure: I was lucky enough to travel with Amway and the Power of 5 to Lusaka, Zambia. It was a beautiful and life-changing experience. As always, all thoughts and opinions are mine and mine alone – based solely in what I saw, thought and felt.