Recently I had the honor of attending the blogger launch party in celebration of FEED Projects new partnership with Lord & Taylor. FEED Projects, which was co-founded by Lauren Bush and Ellen Gustafson, is on a mission to reach hungry children through the sales of their lovable FEED bags. They've so far provided funding for over 55 million school meals for children around the world through the United Nations World Food Programme.
The new partnership includes an exclusive "FEED 1 Guatemala" pouch and "FEED 3 Guatemala" tote which was handmade by Nest, a nonprofit organization that empowers female artists and artisans around the world. The Guatemalan Nest artisans use their traditional Ikat fabrics to make the fun and colorful woven patterns.
FEED Projects has sold bags to supply children all over the world with food, however the recent partnership with Lord & Taylor spotlights Guatemala as a country in need. According to UNICEF, "Guatemala has one of the worst nutritional conditions in the region in the region. Nearly 23% of children over three months and under five years of age suffered from general malnutrition, while almost one-half suffered from chronic malnutrition in 2006."
FEEDProjects.org also spoke in detail on the severity of chronic malnutrition in Guatemala:
"Every day 24,000 children under the age of five die of preventable causes. Malnutrition is the underlying cause in roughly half of these deaths and remains one the world's most serious health problems.
"However, there is hope. Preventable child deaths can be reduced with the implementation of elective health care and nutrition programs. The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) is working to reduce the number of daily preventable child deaths to zero. The FEED Guatemala Bags were created in support of UNICEF's nutrition programs to help children receive the vitamin and mineral supplements they need to survive and thrive. Sales of each bag will help UNICEF supply an entire year's worth of nutritional supplements to a young child in Guatemala-the country with the highest percentage of chronically malnourished children in Latin America. These innovative nutrient powders can be easily sprinkled over a child's food at home, instantly transforming it into a nutritious meal."
At the event, I also was able to chat with co-founders Ellen Gustafson and Lauren Bush who spoke humbly and eloquently about their experience thus far. As co-founders and passionate activists, they have been on the ground, talking first hand to countries in need and determining the most effective and prescriptive way for FEED Projects to offer aid. Part of the FEED Projects misson is to work with only audited and certified fair labor facilities. It's also vital for the FEED Projects team to visit the places their products are made and the places their donations are going.
As an avid supporter of millennial changemakers and social entrepreneurship, both Ellen and Lauren (and all the FEED ladies) embody the power of our generation's voice and the ability to impact real world change.
To purchase the FEED Guatemala bags click here.
Keep in touch with FEED Projects on Twitter by following them at Twitter.com/FeedProjects
Learn more about the Nest Organization by following them at Twitter.com/Buildanest
Follow Naomi Hirabayashi on Twitter: www.twitter.com/nhira