Micro Algae - Macro Impact
Afya – a Social Start-Up Combating Malnutrition
Malnutrition, or more specifically undernutrition, is one of the biggest global health challenges of our time; in millions of cases it is a direct threat to people’s lives.
Unfortunately, in Uganda alone, over 10 million people lack nutrients essential for their health and well-being. The consequences are particularly long-lasting and severe for children, as their cognitive and physical development is especially affected. More than one third of all young children in Uganda are stunted, that is, too short for their age, or underweight.
On the one hand, malnourishment impairs Ugandan children’s immune system, putting them at a greater risk to get sick. In addition to the greater risk of infection, they also suffer from a weakened bone structure and are less physically capable.
On the other hand, one can witness the severe consequences malnourishment has on their mental development. It is extremely difficult for malnourished children to concentrate in school, let alone to complete their education. This leads to a vicious circle: poor job opportunities, low wages, and therefore no means to provide for their future family, leading to more insufficient nutrition. Afya aims to help children break out of this vicious cycle by providing them with the nutrients they need to prosper and grow towards a better future.
At Afya, we produce a natural food supplement in the form of a powder that can be added to food or drink to nutrionally enrich it. The powder is made of spirulina algae which we grow locally in Kampala, Uganda. The algae’s unique nutrient density makes it highly effective in combating malnutrition, as the UN and WHO confirm. An appropriate dose of spirulina to the diet of malnourished people can relieve several deficiencies and actively combat malnutrition. Distributing the algae in schools, especially in rural areas, allows us to reach those most affected: young children in lower-income families.
Did you know? Our food supplement is not only extremely nutritious and easy to use, but also highly sustainable in its production.