MFK announces a $600,000 challenge to complete construction in 2011
Meds & Food for Kids announced a $600,000 challenge for its capital campaign at the Missouri Botanical Garden on Monday April 25th 2011 in St. Louis.
Campaign chairs Dr. Peter Raven, President Emeritus of the Missouri Botanical Garden, and Thad Simons, CEO and President of Novus International, joined Dr. Patricia Wolff, founder and Executive Director of MFK, to address a group of supporters, donors and advocates to talk about MFK's work in Haiti and its push to build a new factory for its life-saving foods.
"We should all be proud that such an extraordinary program began right here in St. Louis,” said Raven. “Now we all need to make sure the new factory is a reality soon to dramatically strengthen this life-saving, community building work in Haiti.”
“MFK goes beyond aid by using local labor and resources to help end the cycle of poverty. They are creating steady jobs, supporting local farmers and making kids healthy.” said Simons.
MFK has successfully treated more than 24,000 malnourished children in Haiti with the ready-to-use therapeutic food that the organization manufactures in a house-turned-factory in Cap Haitian, Haiti. A capital campaign is underway to fund a larger, more efficient factory that will enable Meds & Food for Kids to increase its production ten fold to treat 80,000 children annually.
The “Local Hands Bright Future” campaign goal is $3 million. The increased production of the new factory will create jobs and support 1,000 Haitian peanut farmers. By meeting the standards of large-scale production of international aid organizations that purchase and distribute the treatment products, the factory will become financially self-sustaining by 2015.
“We are thrilled and honored by the generous support we’ve received, especially from our own St. Louis community,” said MFK founder and executive director Dr. Patricia Wolff.
MFK aims to break ground on the new factory later this year and is challenging supporters to generate an additional $600,000 in the next six months to bring the construction plan to fruition.
Meds & Food for Kids saves the lives of Haiti's malnourished children by producing and distributing highly nutritious foods, including Medika Mamba, a Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food endorsed by the World Health Organization and UNICEF. Because of its commitment to Haiti's long-term development.
Andre Fredo who goes simply by Fredo is MFK’s Assistant Production Officer. Fredo comes from a large (this maybe an understatement) family with 8 brothers and sisters. He grew up in Ti Bouk, Port Margo, a small village about 2 hours from Cap Haitian. When Fredo was a child Ti Bouk was a thriving town with many people. Unfortunately due to urbanization and continued erosion from a lack of trees Ti Bouk is no longer a bustling place
At the age of 18 Fredo moved to the Cap Haitien where he rented a small apartment and went to school full time. In 2004 Fredo decided it be safer to live with his cousins in Cap Haitien. Regrettably not long after this move his father became sick and Fredo could no longer afford to go to school. After hearing this a MFK manager who new Fredo thought he would make a great addition to the MFK team, he was right. Fredo has been with MFK for over 3 years and is still working on his education so he can graduate from school in just over a year.
MFK has given Fredo the tools to help those in his community who are suffering from malnutrition. Fredo once encountered a child in his community whose mother had died, despite the caregivers best efforts the child would not gain weight. Fredo asked Davnic, an MFK health agent, to visit the child and take them to the nearest Medika Mamba clinic. According to reports from Fredo the child is growing strong and doing well in school. When Fredo was asked how he felt about his work he replied, “I am happy to work for MFK because I know that we are working to help children who are suffering”.
Fredo is not all business though during his free time he enjoys reading, using the computer, watching T.V. (when there is power) and going to the beach. Fredo is a dedicated and hardworking member of the MFK team who often entertains other employees keeping the work atmosphere light hearted and fun. During the three weeks that MFK’s Production Officer and Quality Manager were in France Fredo stepped up and kept track of all the records required of the Production Officer. He is now attending night computer classes to learn Excel and Word. Fredo’s dedication to MFK, his education, and his community make us proud that he is a part of the MFK team.
Meds & Food for Kids saves the lives of Haiti's malnourished children by producing and distributing highly nutritious foods, including Medika Mamba, a Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food endorsed by the World Health Organization and UNICEF. Because of its commitment to Haiti's long-term development, MFK produces Medika Mamba in Haiti, with Haitian labor, and with many Haitian raw materials