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Archive - February 2013

1
Malnutrition, an entrenched problem
2
Worldcoo shares its experiences in Barcelona Activa
3
6.9 million Children need you
4
Ethiopia has suffered a series of famines in recent decades
5
The Kukra River social context
6
iWith.org becomes Worldcoo’s new partner!
7
"In Spain there are farms where monkeys are bred in very bad conditions"
8
What DESOS NGO is doing with my donation?
9
The presence of the chimpanzee in Senegal
10
Worldcoo has a new project!

Malnutrition, an entrenched problem

Malnutrition is common among young children in developing countries. Often it is caused by poor infant weaning practices.

Related to a study made by UNICEF in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO), in 2011, an estimated 165 million children under five years of age worldwide were stunted (i.e., low height-for-age), a decrease from an estimated 253 million similar children in 1990. High prevalence levels of stunting among children under five years of age in Africa (36% in 2011) and Asia (27% in 2011) remain a public health problem, one which often goes unrecognized. In 2011, an estimated 101 million children under five years of age worldwide were underweight (i.e., low weight-for-age), a decrease from an estimated 159 million similar children in 1990. Although the prevalence of stunting and underweight among children under five years of age worldwide have decreased since 1990, overall progress is insufficient and millions of children remain at risk. Often, this high level of malnutrition in these early years is caused by poor infant weaning practices.

The Republic of The Gambia, situated on the western coast of Africa, forms a narrow enclave in the Republic of Senegal except for a short seaboard on the Atlantic coastline. The population, very young, is now predominantly urban. Nevertheless agriculture remains a key sector of The Gambia’s economy and is the source of livelihood for more than three-quarters of the population. Economic performance has improved, but as yet, this has not translated into reduced poverty, which remains widespread and severe, with about 60% of the population below the poverty line.

Although a slight improvement has been observed since 2000, infant and under-five mortality rates remain high. A high maternal mortality ratio is also observed. Access to health facilities is relatively good, but poor quality of services reduces the effectiveness of the health system. Nevertheless, immunization coverage among children is expanding.

Nutrition Without Borders NGO is aware of this situation and this is why they are presenting this project in Worldcoo’s website. This project is part of the context of an overall strategy to reduce morbidity and mortality caused by maternal and child malnutrition in the same region (206.588 inhabitants and 22% of child malnutrition).

Source: WHO, FAO, UNICEF.

Worldcoo shares its experiences in Barcelona Activa

Yesterday, Tuesday 26th of February, Aureli Bou presented Worldcoo as part of the conference ‘Crowdfunding: innovative financing alternatives’, in Barcelona Activa.

Barcelona Activa periodically organizes training activities to help companies in finding and securing funding. Yesterday was the time to talk about crowdfunding. Crowdfunding, as we have already published, is a funding system based on collective small donations to specific business projects. It is becoming an alternative system in front of the conventional funding systems, and this is why many start-ups have recently born to work with it. Around 80 people from different fields, companies but also people interested in start-ups, were listening.

Jaume Baró, chief operating from Barcelona Activa was the responsible of welcome the assistants. After that, Javier Martín, editor from Loogic.com, referent blog about start-ups, as well as Plenummedia social media Director, did a conference about crowdfunding, under the title of “How can this new financing system help your company”.

Two major Catalan companies working with crowdfunding also shared there experiences in front of the audience. The first one was Verkami, born in 2010 with the hope to find funding for creativity, art and research projects. It has now more than 90,000 fans and over 70% of projects have achieved the necessary financing platform to more than 3 million. The following was The Crowd Angel, the first online platform which allows people invest in a range of professional technology and innovative start-ups. They have raised more than 600,000 euros by the projects they have in the platform.

Then, new active cowdfunding platforms in the city presented their projects. Was the turn of: Bihoop, Arboribus, Megafounder, Mynbest, Projeggt, Seed & Click and Puentis.

Worldcoo closured this meeting. Aureli Bou share in front of the audience what is Worldcoo and how together we can do big things.

For Worldcoo was an honour being part of this meeting, surrounded of all this important companies.

6.9 million Children need you

Every year 6.9 million children do not live for their 5th birthday. Malnutrition is one of its most important causes: it contributes to 1/3 of these deaths. That means 2.3 million children die per year as a consequence of malnutrition, because it provokes high risk of disease besides other symptoms.

Worldcoo is aware of that, and wants to take care of it. It is looking for a solution because these children have the chance to celebrate their 5th birthday. And their 6th. And their 7th. And following.

This is why Worldcoo has met the NGO Nutrition Without Borders who, in a few, is presenting a new project in Worldcoo’s platform. The aim of this project is to increase food security for the mothers and children through training and improving the infrastructure of the selected community gardens of the Upper River Region, Republic of The Gambia.

This project is part of the context of an overall strategy to reduce morbidity and mortality caused by maternal and child malnutrition in the same region (206.588 inhabitants and 22% of child malnutrition). Tomorrow you will find all the information in Worldcoo’s website.

Worldcoo and Nutrition Without Borders NGO did their work. Now it’s your turn.

Ethiopia has suffered a series of famines in recent decades

Ethiopia is one of Africa’s poorest states, although it has experienced rapid economic growth since the end of the civil war (1974 – 1991). It represents one of fastest growing non-oil economies in Africa. Ethiopia depends heavily on agriculture, which is often affected by drought. It is one of Africa’s leading coffee producers, which becomes a key export. Almost two-thirds of its people are illiterate.

Ethiopia is Africa’s oldest independent country and it is second largest in terms of population. Apart from a five-year occupation by Mussolini’s Italy, it has never been colonised.

It has a unique cultural heritage, being the home of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church and a monarchy that ended only in the coup of 1974.

It served as a symbol of African independence throughout the colonial period, and was a founder member of the United Nations and the African base for many international organizations.

Ethiopia has suffered periodic droughts and famines that lead to a long civil conflict in the 20th Century and a border war with Eritrea, a country that become independent from Ethiopia in 1993, following a referendum. Poor border demarcation from these both countries developed into military conflict and full-scale war in the late 1990s in which tens of thousands of people were killed.

Many Ethiopians depend on food aid from abroad. In 2004 the government began a drive to move more than two million people away from the arid highlands of the east in an attempt to provide a lasting solution to food shortages.

Source: BBC.

The Kukra River social context

The constitution of the Kukra River community, in Bluefields, Nicaragua, was determined by the process of reunification of displaced people during the Sandinista Revolution (1978-1990). This revolution forced lots of Nicaraguan people to migrate to Costa Rica, who, after the establishment of the current system, returned home. It is a region of new residents and the town has been built in recent years.

Much of the progress achieved hitherto have been accompanied by the performance of different NGOs and cooperation projects, which today, still are the major drivers of change in the area.

Public intervention by the government is poorly developed, and the lack of good communications in the area, make Kukra River one of the less developed locations in Nicaragua. It has also a very isolated social context focused on, among others, the gender discrimination.

A researcher of Bluefields Police Station explained that these communities live under a patriarchal organization, where women are a subject dependent on men. This causes gender discrimination that occurs at different levels. For example, lack of awareness and cooperation from family and friends, makes a case such as women victims of domestic violence and rape relegated to the purely private sphere. “The woman is unable to report because no one dares to start a life alone, there is not enough stable job offers for women in the area”, the researcher complaint. Eventually, the woman finished being subjected for their children and for the few future prospects that are sighted.

Desos NGO tries to mitigate this situation by informing women of their rights, but ensure that there is still much to do.

Source: Desos NGO.

iWith.org becomes Worldcoo’s new partner!

iWith.org is a nonprofit organization with the mission of helping NGOs in the Internet use. As well, its expert’s network is able to create and manage all Internet services from professional websites. In an everyday more digital World, be present in Internet is a must for everybody, but more for that organizations who ask for money to make possible cooperation projects. Communication must be the principal tool for these organizations to reach their target, and now it’s impossible to think about communication without having in mind the Internet and the new digital ways of being in touch.

Also, for a cowdfunding project, Internet is the main communication channel so it’s important to know how you can use it. As well, a social community is needed, and to build it, the good use of the Internet tools is a must. Communication objectives have to be identified, actions should be planned, and everything has to be carried out through the web and the social networks. This is why Worldcoo started to work in synergy with iWith.org Foundation.

iWhit.org offers advisory scholarships as a prelude to the development of a good Internet presence. Between the conditions for the granting of these scholarships, the projects submitted in Worldcoo are positively considered.

Internet is Worldcoo’s way of life, and it’s becoming to be also NGO’s way, therefore this synergy with iWith.org gives Worldcoo a huge value.

"In Spain there are farms where monkeys are bred in very bad conditions"

Jane Goodall, primatologist and ethologist, criticizes the use of animals in biomedical research after receiving the Parliamentary Association Award in Defence of Animals (APDDA) in Madrid, Spain.

When Jane Goodall was two years old received a stuffed chimpanzee as a birthday gift, from her father. That, was probably his first contact with the species and the beginning of a long friendship and care that lasts to the nearly 80 years she has today. The researcher is known for her studies on the interaction of wild chimpanzees in Gomba National Park in Tanzania, and for being a great defender of them. She is already Messenger of Peace United Nations, Prince of Asturias Award for Research, and now she also was given the Parliamentary Association Award in Defence of Animals (APDDA).

She has a serene and peaceful face, the kind that only transmits peace. But her gaze hardens when speaking of the treatment given to humans and animals, especially the apes. “It is a question about the no empathy we have with them. We share so many things with them, like the DNA and a similar brain structure. But we fail to see their suffering, what they are afraid of, that they become stressed and depressed just like us”. Dr. Goodall considers that there have been advances to protect animals, but there are still spaces as is their use in medical research: “fifty years ago the doctors had no alternative, but now there are”.

According to Dr. Goodall, poverty is the root cause of the losing of biodiversity. “When you’re too poor, you are desperate to eat, so we have to get first to the people of this state”. This has initiated several projects to educate people in Africa on the preservation of biodiversity, like the one they have just presented in Worldcoo. “We train people in land management and to monitor forests. But also we taught women to family planning and give them scholarships to go to school”.

Source: El País.

What DESOS NGO is doing with my donation?

Desos Opció Solidaria NGO needs 15.000 euros to build a drying machine, a fermenter machine and a warehouse to get producer families out of their current precarious work situation.

Cocoa has an added value compared to other agricultural products. Unlike rice, beans, maize or other important basic products grown in Kukra River for consumption, cocoa helps the promotion of the productive economy of the region.

Cocoa is already grown in Kukra River by local producers. Each producer ferment and dry the crop in its own plot, without having the necessary equipment, so the cocoa is being sold at low prices that do not allow economic development of farming families.

To improve the quality of cocoa and allow the commercialization at a fairer price in the national and international markets is essential to provide farmers with new tools to increase the value of production. To do this, Desos Opció Solidaria NGO is seeking funds to build a drying machine, a fermenter machine and a warehouse in the COOPMULKRI’s installations, located in the community of La Aurora, Kukra River, Nicaragua.

15,000 euros is the amount needed to expand facilities and to ensure the training of farmers through various workshops on farming techniques, management, gender equality, cooperatives, environmental sustainability and technical advice in the field.

Are you helping?

Source: Desos Opció Solidària NGO

The presence of the chimpanzee in Senegal

“The presence of the chimpanzee in Senegal is strategic to secure its northernmost habitat, and it is also crucial to protect and restore if necessary the UICN’s priority area for chimpanzee conservation of the Fouta Jallon in Guinea”, reports Jane Goodall Institute NGO. The main threats faced by the chimpanzee in this territory are: deforestation and habitat degradation by human activities on top of logging (agriculture, farming, wild fruit gathering, and pollution of water courses).

The Jane Goodall Institute reports that the subspecies Pan Troglodytes Verus (West African Chimpanzee) is endangered in the region and presents reduced numbers in Senegal (ranging between 200 and 500 individuals), while numbers in Guinea are higher (between 17 and 22,000 individuals, UICN, 2004) although with an extremely high fragmentation of the habitat. JGI also appoints: “It is crucial to protect and restore if necessary the UICN’s priority area for chimpanzee conservation of the Fouta Jallon in Guinea”.

The Fouta is not only home to the biggest population of chimps in West Africa, it is also considered the water tower of the region. The three main rivers in the region have its source on the Fouta Jallon massif: the Gambia, the Senegal and the Niger River, providing the water needed in many countries from Mauritania to Nigeria that allows the subsistence of millions of Africans. “Protecting the Fouta’s forests is without doubt the most urgent priority in terms of human subsistence and biodiversity conservation in the region”, reports the JGI. Among other important species, “chimpanzee’s survival is especially critical due to several reasons”. To start with, chimpanzees attract tourism, which is an essential activity to improve life standards for the communities in the long term. Secondly, chimpanzees are one of the best indicators of the conservation status of the forests and the ecosystem in general. Finally, the Dindefelo’s Community Reserve, a protected area managed by the local population, is becoming one of the most important centers for nature research in the region and that will enhance the arrival of professors and students which will increase local capacities for better management of the environment. The Jane Goodall Institute concludes that “the recently created (2010) 13300 ha Community Reserve of Dindefelo, and its future cross border enlargement to reach around 74,000 ha on the Guinean side will help achieve both goals, for chimpanzee conservation and ecosystem protection and restoration”.

Source: Jane Goodall Institute.

Worldcoo has a new project!

Worldcoo presents today a new project from the Jane Goodall Institute. This is the first project that comes out of the recent collaboration between Worldcoo and the Catalan Agency for Development Cooperation (ACCD).

“Solar equipment for the Agroforestry School of the Dindefelo Community” is the new Worldcoo’s project, from the Jane Goodall Institute. The main goal of this project is to improve agroforestry management skills among local communities. There is a school, located at the Dindefelo’s Natural Reserve, southeast of Senegal, managed by the local community, which wants to become a reference in West Africa for biodiversity, agroforestry and natural resource management, and food security improvement. Jane Goodall Institute wishes that this centre will contribute to the endangered chimpanzees’ survival in the region.

This project is part for another already started project. The main one seeks to achieve two different goals:
1) Building the research and training facilities, and
2) Equipping them with the basic equipment to function.

The first goal is already fund, and the organization hopes it will be accomplished by the month of April 2013. What they are presenting in Worldcoo is the funding they need to accomplish the second one, equally important but not funded yet. To make it possible, solar panels are the first priority to allow setting up a regular calendar of trainings and classes with all guarantees.

The primatologist Jane Goodall founded the Jane Goodall Institute in 1977, as a global non-profit that empowers people to make a difference for all living things. Their work builds on Dr. Goodall’s scientific work and her humanitarian vision, specifically all related in understanding and treatment of apes through research, public education and advocacy.

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