St. Louis Business Journal Talks of MFK and Oprah

St. Louis Business Journal reporter Kelsey Volkmann published a post on her blog today about Meds & Food for Kids. Wednesday’s Oprah Winfrey show featured footage from one of MFK’s videos about malnutrition and Haiti. To read the full posting, click here.


Film Shows Meds & Food for Kids in Haiti

St. Louis Business Journal

Kelsey Volkmann
January 21, 2010

If you caught the Oprah Winfrey show Wednesday, you saw footage from a documentary shot by local filmmakers about Dr. Patricia Wolff’s Meds & Food for Kids and its work to combat malnutrition in Haiti.

Documentarians Lori Dowd and Frank Popper have headed back to the poor island country to continue filming their movie about St. Louis-based Meds & Food for Kids and its efforts to help earthquake victims.

In early 2009, Dowd, vice president for program development at Avatar Studios in St. Louis, approached Wolff, a pediatrician in private practice and associate clinical professor of pediatrics at Washington University School of Medicine, about shooting a documentary on the organization’s distribution of Medika Mamba, an enriched peanut paste. The ready-to-use therapeutic food not only helps starving children but also puts Haitians to work, including 65 farmers.

In March 2009, with a travel allowance of $5,000, Dowd and Popper traveled to Haiti and shot 50 hours of footage over the course of 10 days.

The production team at Avatar spent two months and about $60,000 in donated work and resources to make a short documentary that will be used to raise money to complete the film. Avatar’s senior editor, Scott Betz, edited the 10-minute short, and Avatar’s sound designer, Jim MacMorran produced the soundtrack.

In the movie, Wolff examines a 12-month-old boy who weighs only 11 pounds. “It’s really almost 100 years ago here,” she says.

Wolff is currently in Haiti, along with volunteer Steve Tillery, a senior member of law firm Korein Tillery, part of Meds & Food for Kids’ disaster response team. The peanut paste is the “very best thing for children,” Wolff says in the film. “It’s bringing them back from half-dead.”

Watch the documentary here.