Tag Archives: health

Ava Anderson Non-Toxic Partners With Edesia Global Nutrition Solutions

Ava Anderson Non-Toxic Partners With Edesia Global Nutrition Solutions

Ava Anderson Non-Toxic Partners With Edesia Global Nutrition Solutionsava copy

Two Rhode Island companies, founded and run by women, have come together this month to double the opportunity for positive impact.

Ava Anderson and Edesia were both boldly founded in Rhode Island in 2009, when the state was in the midst of the great recession that had enveloped the entire country. Both were founded by women on a mission to bring about change, and as a credit to the power of storytelling in the media, both were inspired by a news story they saw on TV.  For Navyn it was Anderson Cooper reporting on a “miracle” treatment for malnutrition called Plumpy’Nut .  For Ava it was a program about the toxins found in everyday cosmetic products that were dangerous to women’s health.

AvaAnderson copy

Ava Anderson

Unable to find any products on the market truly toxin free Ava set about creating her own line of safe non-toxic beauty, and home care products.

Navyn Salem

Navyn Salem

By establishing the non-profit Edesia in 2009 and producing Plumpy’Nut in her home state, Navyn both provided local jobs, and global nutrition solutions all at once.

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Both companies have grown exponentially since they launched five years ago.

For the month of November each order of Ava Anderson products will provide a packet of Plumpy’Nut to a child in need.

Typically within 7-week course of Plumpy’Nut a child suffering from severe acute malnutrition can be brought back to a healthy weight. Proper nutrition is especially critical in small children whose brains and bodies are growing rapidly, and lack of nutrition can cause a condition called stunting from which they will never reach their full cognitive potential.

This partnership offers a great opportunity to purchase safe, toxin free products for yourself and your loved ones, while knowing that at the same time you will also be contributing towards the treatment of a child’s health. Plus for each order made through this link using the party ID # 4418 4 you will be entered to win a $25.00 Ava Anderson gift certificate! You can help us to #NourishTheFuture with these gifts that give back this month.

Please feel free to share this post and inspire others to shop Ava in November for maximum impact.

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This Man’s Mind Is In The Toilet

This Man’s Mind Is In The Toilet

Today is the first ever World Toilet Day and a new report released today Co-published by WaterAid, the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council, and Unilever’s leading household cleaning brand, Domestos, We can’t wait highlights the stark consequences that the lack of toilets and good hygiene practices have for women and girls. according to this report there are still 2.5 billion people in this world without adequate sanitation. Lack of sanitation directly impacts education, health and safety, especially for women and girls.

“One in three [people] lack access to adequate sanitation,” noted UN Deputy-Secretary General, Jan Eliasson and Unilever Chief Executive Officer, Paul Polman in the report. “The result is widespread death and disease and social marginalization. Poor sanitation exposes women and girls to the risk of assault and, when schools cannot provide clean, safe toilets, girls’ attendance drops.”

In Rhode Island, one man has come up with an innovative  solution. Dr Stephen Mecca is a Professor in the department of Engineering-Pysics-Systems at Providence College, and a visiting scholar at the University of Ghana. He co-Invented the micro flush valve and with his research team has created an environmentally sensible , sanitary, and dignified, re-invention of the toilet. Designed for warm weather environments, this toilet takes less than a cup of water to flush,  and that comes from the hand washing of the previous user. In the above video Dr. mecca explains how it works.

This Microflush toilet is the type of innovation that can transform lives, and the We Can’t Wait Report  shows that strong partnerships between the public and private sectors are key to tackling the sanitation crisis, and that more frequent cross-sector collaboration is essential to improving the lives of women and girls.

Infographic source: the We Can't Wait report

Infographic source: the We Can’t Wait report

About WaterAid

WaterAid’s vision is of a world where everyone has access to safe water and sanitation. The international organization works in 27 countries across Africa, Asia, Central America and the Pacific Region to transform lives by improving access to safe water, hygiene and sanitation in some of the world’s poorest communities. Since 1981, WaterAid has reached 19 million people with safe water and, since 2004, 15 million people with sanitation. For more information, visit www.wateraid.org, follow @WaterAidAmerica on Twitter or visit them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/wateraidamerica.

How Important Is It To Wash Your hands? #2030NOW

How Important Is It To Wash Your hands? #2030NOW

Cooking With Kids; ChopChop Invites You To The #BigPicnic

Cooking With Kids; ChopChop Invites You To The #BigPicnic

ChopChop Big PicnicParsnip and Dill, I tell my kids. Those are my secret ingredients for delicious chicken soup. Well not my recipe I confess, but passed on to me by Grandma Nettie, Auntie Kimbo’s grandmother. They know that “Auntie” Kimbo is not really their aunt, and that her name is Kim (Kimberly but don’t tell her I told you!).  They also know that Kim and I have been friends since we were six, and somewhere Kim turned into Kimbo, as those things go with longtime childhood friends.

In any case, my kids and I love to cook together and it has been fun as they grow to watch them conquer more and more complex cooking tasks on their own. And by complex I mean my 10-year-old is up to the cracking the eggs into a bowl without bits of shell getting in. One of the most rewarding moments of motherhood so far was the birthday morning that I woke up to heart-shaped pancakes made for me by my 13-year-old daughter. My child had cooked for me , and that felt revolutionary.

I like to cook with them for the same reason that I like to keep a small (o.k. weed infested) garden in our backyard. I like for them to know where their food comes from. To understand the process of how what we put into our body is made, and that they can make food for themselves, it does not have to come in a package or be bought off a shelf. We had been big fans of the quarterly publication ChopChop Magazine for years, loving to try the healthful recipes and snack suggestions within its colorful pages. ChopChop is a non-profit  with the mission to inspire and teach kids to cook and eat real food with their families.

Currently, 1 out of 400 children under 18 in the U.S. has diabetes, and nearly 1 in 3 is obese. ChopChop’s goal is to reverse this trend by teaching kids and their parents how to create healthy, delicious meals that are easy to prepare and use fresh, nutritious ingredients. ChopChop doesn’t demonize particular foods or use scare tactics. They just offer simple, healthy, and affordable recipes for children and parents to make together.

When we found out ChopChop had come out with a  ChopChop cookbook  we were thrilled.   We were sent a copy as a lead up to our participation in The Big Picnic, and when we received our copy of the cookbook  I had the kids pick out a recipe for us to try.  With four kids coming to a consensus can be challenging to say the least, this time somehow they all enthusiastically agreed that they wanted to make Matzo Balls to add to Grandma Nettie’s Chicken Soup.

The ChopChop Cookbook is made for kids so it is easy for them to read and follow the well explained simple recipes. Personally I never knew I could make Matzo balls, so to find them so easy to make surprised me. Of course the kids all wanted to crack the eggs so I was grateful that the recipe they chose called for 6! Of course rolling the Matzo balls was the most fun, but watching them fluff up as they cooked came pretty close.

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Inspired by National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month in September, The Big Picnic is being hosted on September 22nd by ChopChop and partner organizations including The White House as a virtual community picnic in which families across the country will cook and eat together at their own picnics. It will be a fun event with a serious goal: preventing childhood obesity.  Who doesn’t love a picnic!?! They are a great way to remind us that cooking and eating healthy food together is lots of fun—a time to share and enjoy. This event is all about good food and good company!

You can join The Big Picnic however you like, spread out a blanket , eat at a picnic table – outside or in. Invite friends, family,  neighbors, and make it as simple or as elaborate as you want. Take pictures or video and share with the hashtag #bigpicnic, and as a participant you will be eligible to win prizes like subscriptions to the magazine, a copy of the  ChopChop cookbook or other fun surprises. We’ll be there, eating our Matzo Ball Soup!

You can also Enter to Win a ChopChop cookbook and a one-year ChopChop Magazine subscription Below!
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This is an original post written by me as part of a program with The Mission List. I received a ChopChop cookbook + magazine subscription for culinary inspiration; as always all opinions are my own.




Build Something Incredible With WaterAid In Madagascar This Summer

Build Something Incredible With WaterAid In Madagascar This Summer


Photo by  Igor Laszlo

Photo by Igor Laszlo

Madagascar is an Island nation in the Indian Ocean with a population of around 22 million. When Madagascar is mentioned, a lush landscape of biodiversity and unique wildlife is conjured in the imagination . When I learned I’d be writing about the WaterAid campaign to provide clean water and sanitation to thousands of children there, I called our friends Jim and Annick who had grown up and lived in Madagascar.

They describe the country as a tropical paradise, with unique cultural diversity, and as one of the most beautiful places on earth. While consistent with our perceptions of Madagascar, much of the population also lives in poverty. Jim adds that occasionally something will happen to remind you that this paradise is also one of the poorest places in the world.

This summer, let’s build something incredible… children’s futures! Be part of a unique project transforming the lives of Madagascar’s schoolchildren with taps and toilets.

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Photo by Igor Laszlo

In Madagascar, the lack of taps and toilets is a big problem.

Every year, 13,000 children under five die due to water-related diseases. With half the population under 16, young people across the country are affected in many different ways.

This summer, you have an amazing opportunity to transform the lives of 12,000 children. With your help, we can reach 31 schools with over 100 toilets and 150 taps in total.

– www.wateraidamerica.org

Jim also clearly remembered visiting the Morondava area of Madagascar where  WaterAid will be working this summer to improve water and sanitation conditions. He remembered well because he became horribly sick after a meal there with one of the worst intestinal illnesses he can remember.  As he described the geography of the area, it sits on the West Coast Canal of Mozambique where hurricane season ricochets between the coasts of Mozambique, Tanzania, and Madagascar. The topography of the region is flat, and sits by the ocean, and despite its beauty, the clean water supply becomes tainted each year with the storms, and heavy rains, causing a surge in water related illness around that time. Jim states that “You are in Paradise, but Hell is not too far away”. For a child without access to proper healthcare, an illness like the one Jim experienced can be deadly.


Morondava Beach Photo by Igor Laszlo

Morondava Beach Photo by Igor Laszlo


Over the next few weeks you can follow the story as children in Madagascar get the water and sanitation they need to keep them healthy enough to build their dreams.

Children like Perlette and Zafera.

Follow their story on Twitter #buildfutures or Donate to help the project reach their goal.


Perlette: “I want to be a doctor”

“I am 13 years old. I love school, as it is the only way to be clever. When I am older I want to be a doctor and treat sick children. I have missed school because of drinking dirty water. It may stop me from being a doctor.”


Zafera: “I want to be a midwife”

“Science and geography are my favorite lessons. When I finish my studies, I would like to be a midwife like my aunt. If we have water and toilets here, we will be more engaged in our studies.”

All summer long they will be posting real-time updates on the two girls, the progress of the construction with a celebration on Sept. 19 when kids return to schools with taps and toilets for the first time. Check out the plans!

Please join me on an incredible journey. I’ll be bringing you stories and pictures from Tsimahavaobe school in Morondava, so you too can see the amazing transformation.- Ernest Randriarimalala,  WaterAid Madagascar


global team

I wrote this post as part of The Global Team of 200, a highly specialized group of members of Mom Bloggers for Social Good that concentrates on issues involving women and girls, children, world hunger and maternal health.

Our Motto: Individually we are all-powerful. Together we can change the world. We believe in the power of collective action to help others and believe in ourselves to make this world a better place for our children and the world’s children.