Thursday, November 12, 2009


Not many know this, but malnutrition is one of the most serious health problems facing India. 46% of all children under 5 years old in India are underweight I.e. 60 million children. In Madhya Pradesh, 60% of children under 5 are malnourished— this exceeds the numbers in Ethiopia. 

Malnutrition raises a child’s chances of mortality from common diseases such as pneumonia and malaria, constituting 22% of India’s disease burden.

For the children who do survive childhood: malnourishment will have limited their mental and physical growth capacity, preventing their ability to get an education or contribute to the family’s economic stability, continuing the cycle of poverty.

Real Medicine Foundation has been working across the world to eradicate malnutrition by working with the most vulnerable communities to identify, treat and prevent malnutrition. The management team based in the US has operational teams in North and South America, Africa, Asia and Europe. And the best thing is that these teams are made up of people who want to contribute their skills, time, knowledge, and their passion to support people in need, be it full time or part time.

Thus, if you want, and if you love children really, YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE. In small ways and big and both are equally welcome.

The most obvious thing you can do is donate money, if you have excess of it, or if you feel enough for the cause. Donation of $25 can save a child. Donation of $100 can save a family. $300 can save a village.

But, if you have been involved with issues, you'd know that yes, money is important, but more important than that is to donate your time and efforts. I had asked Caitlin, who's the Director of the Malnutrition Eradication Initiative in India to send a me a list of how people in the cities, can make a little difference and do their bit for this big problem and this is her list of to dos for those interested.

  • Macro-engagement – do you have the time to volunteer at a larger scale? There are plenty of things we need help with from hands on the ground to creating business plans to data analysis to creative writing to fundraising to partnership development, etc etc etc.  What are you good at? We need help with that
  • Network – tell people about malnutrition in India and what RMF is doing to stop it! We can always use contacts who want to donate funds, donate goods (nutritional supplements, HIV test kits, etc)
  • Fundraise
    • Throw a house party or event for RMF – ask each guest to give a small amount at the door or buy a drink on behalf of RMF 
  • Donate old toys/games – even better, organize a drive! (only if you live in India)
  • Do you have a medical background?   We can always use the help of a paramedic, nurse, or doctor
    • You could either intern with our partner Jeeven Jyoti Hospital or work with us in the field on HIV/AIDS, malnutrition, rural health, checking up on the kids at the school, or any combination of the above.
  • Are you creative?  We can always use artists, graphic designers, etc to help us with
    • Communications materials for illiterate people
    • Poster/brouchure, etc design
  • Photographer/film makers: Come out to the field with RMF, it will be an eye-opening adventure, and a chance to get some amazing footage we can use for educational and outreach films, PSAs, YouTubes promotional videos, etc.
  • Editors: We’re always looking for people to help us edit footage and to make it into something educational and convincing

With your help, Real Medicine Foundation  wants to ensure a strong, healthy, and hopeful future for India’s children. For more information on this initiatives and how you can help, visit, or contact the Director of the Malnutrition Eradication Initiative in India, Caitlin McQuilling, with your question, comments, or suggestions at


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