The Food Crisis is Growing 
Ministry of Health Confirms 16 deaths of Children  Due to Acute Malnutrition
By: Ferdy Montepeque Posted 11-13-20
The investigation of the Ministry of Health on deaths due to malnutrition is slow. Only 76 cases have been analyzed so far this year.  While official projections point to an increase in hunger in vulnerable families for the coming months, the government continues without accurate data on acute childhood malnutrition and with little coordination between institutions to confirm new cases and deaths due to malnutrition.
Until October 31, the Ministry of Public Health and Social Assistance (MSPAS) identified that 16 minors died of acute malnutrition, out of 76 deaths investigated.
According to data from the MSPAS Epidemiology Department, the 16 deaths from acute malnutrition (children weighing less than their corresponding height according to their height) were reported in Huehuetenango, Petén, Quiché, Alta Verapaz, Suchitepéquez, Jalapa, Baja Verapaz and El Progreso . The other 60 deaths investigated were ruled out because the main causes of death were secondary acute malnutrition, congenital malformation, among others.
Additionally, 101 other cases are awaiting confirmation if acute malnutrition was the main reason for death. The Technical Table for the Analysis of Morbidity and Mortality from Acute Malnutrition recommended creating a follow-up plan for delays in care.
Case Search
In order to have confirmed data, the Secretariat of Food and Nutritional Security (Sesan), together with other institutions, began on July 21 the active search for children with acute malnutrition through brigades. Until November 5, the crews identified 684 children with acute malnutrition, out of the 157,581 evaluated, according to information provided by Sesan.
Maritza Méndez, Secretary of Food Security, indicated that for the next few months there is a projection that 2.7 million people will be in moderate and severe food insecurity; that is, with an inability to access quality food.
In addition to these cases, the MSPAS reports that to date there are 24,364 children with acute malnutrition. However, these cases have yet to be ratified by the health areas.
Tobías Tzoc, coordinator of the Instance of Consultation and Social Participation (Incopas), pointed out that the current government handles a speech in support of nutrition. However, in practice the reality is different because it cuts funds for these actions, there is little strengthening at the primary level of health and there is little coordination between state institutions to combat malnutrition.
They investigate the death of a girl
The MSPAS reported that the Chiquimula Health Area has been investigating since yesterday whether the death of a nine-year-old girl from the El Naranjo community, Jocotán, was as a result of chronic malnutrition. On November 11, the minor was transferred by her father to the Permanent Attention Center (CAP) in the village of Los Vados. But it has not yet been clarified if her death occurred before or after she was admitted to the health center.
According to the Ministry, the girl was not registered in the monthly growth monitoring controls, as being chronically malnourished, a disease that is identified by her short stature in relation to her age.
Víctor Sosa, project coordinator for the NGO Asedechi, indicated that the family of the deceased minor was part of a food program implemented by that organization. He explained that he was not registered because the monitoring of weight and height is carried out with children under five years of age. According to Asedechi, one of the brothers of the girl who died, aged 5 years and 11 months, suffers from severe acute malnutrition with clinical signs.
More On The Global Food Crisis from the United Nations /AP
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The head of the World Food Program says the Nobel Peace Prize has given the U.N. agency a spotlight and megaphone to warn world leaders that next year is going to be worse than this year, and without billions of dollars “we are going to have famines of biblical proportions in 2021.”
David Beasley said in an interview with The Associated Press that the Norwegian Nobel Committee was looking at the work the agency does every day in conflicts, disasters and refugee camps, often putting staffers’ lives at risk to feed millions of hungry people -- but also to send “a message to the world that it’s getting worse out there ... (and) that our hardest work is yet to come.”
“It was so timely because we’ve been fighting to get above the choir,” Beasley said of last month’s award, pointing to the news being dominated by the U.S. elections and the COVID-19 pandemic, and the difficulty of getting global attention focused on “the travesty that we’re facing around the world.”
“So this was really a gift from above,” Beasley said, recalling the surprise and delight of WFP’s 20,000 staffers worldwide, and his own shock at being interrupted during a meeting in Niger in Africa’s Sahel region with the news.
Beasley recalled his warning to the U.N. Security Council in April that as the world was dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, it was also “on the brink of a hunger pandemic” that could lead to “multiple famines of biblical proportions” within a few months if immediate action wasn’t taken.
“We were able to avert it in 2020 ... because the world leaders responded with money, stimulus packages, deferral of debt,” he said.
Now, Beasley said, COVID-19 is surging again, economies are continuing to deteriorate particularly in low- and middle-income countries, and there is another wave of lockdowns and shutdowns.
But he said the money that was available in 2020 isn’t going to be available in 2021, so he has been using the Nobel to meet leaders virtually and in person, talk to parliaments, and give speeches to sensitize those with power to “this tragedy that we are facing -- crises that really are going to be extraordinary over the next, who knows, 12 to 18 months.”
“Everybody now wants to meet with the Nobel Peace Prize winner,” Beasley said, explaining he now gets 45 minutes instead of 15 minutes with leaders and is able to go into depth and explain how bad things are going to be next year and how leaders are going to have to prioritize programs. “And the response has really been good,” he said.
“I’m telling them you’re not going to have enough money to fund all the projects you historically fund,” he said.
“Those are important things,” Beasley said, but he likened the upcoming crisis to the Titanic saying “right now, we really need to focus on icebergs, and icebergs are famine, starvation, destabilization and migration.”
Beasley said WFP needs $15 billion next year -- $5 billion just to avert famine and $10 billion to carry out the agency’s global programs including for malnourished children and school lunches which are often the only meal youngsters get.
“If I could get that coupled with our normal money, then we avert famine around the world” and minimize destabilization as well as migration. he said. In addition to raising extra money from governments, Beasley said, his other “great hope” is that billionaires that have made billions during the COVID-19 pandemic will step up on a one-time basis. He plans to start pushing this message probably in December or January.
In April, Beasley said 135 million people faced “crisis levels of hunger or worse.” A WFP analysis then showed that COVID-19 could push an additional 130 million people “to the brink of starvation by the end of 2020.”
He said in Wednesday’s virtual interview from Rome, where WFP is based, that while famine was averted this year, the number of people facing crisis levels of hunger is increasing toward 270 million.
“There’s about three dozen countries that could possibly enter the famine conditions if we don’t have the money we need,” Beasley said. According to a joint analysis by WFP and the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization in October, 20 countries “are likely to face potential spikes in high acute food insecurity” in the next three to six months, “and require urgent attention.”
Of those, Yemen, South Sudan, northeastern Nigeria and Burkina Faso have some areas that “have reached a critical hunger situation following years of conflict or other shocks,” the U.N. agencies said, and any further deterioration in coming months “could lead to a risk of famine.”
Other countries requiring “urgent attention” are Afghanistan, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Ethiopia, Haiti, Lebanon, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Sierra Leone, Somali, Sudan, Syria, Venezuela, Zimbabwe, they said.
Beasley said a COVID-19 vaccine “will create some optimism that hopefully will help jump the economies around the world, particularly the Western economies. But the WFP executive director said there’s already been $17 billion of economic stimulus this year “and we’re not going to have that globally.”
“We’re very, very, very concerned” that with deferred debt payments for low- and middle-income countries resuming in January, new lockdowns and the rippling economic impact, “2021’s going to be a very bad year,” Beasley said. 
Coat Off Your Back
Annual Coat Off Your Back Gears Up in Spite of the Pandemic!
Join Northbrook Rotarians in Helping the Homeless
The pandemic has forced us to shelter at home for much of our days, and it has not been fun. But imagine not having a home, especially during a pandemic with winter upon us.
“The Rotary Club of Northbrook’s annual “Coats Off Your Back” drive has helped to mitigate a local problem that is even more important this year. Our annual drive will provide coats and other winter gear for those served by PADS of Lake County, an organization known for Providing Advocacy, Dignity & Shelter for the homeless.” Says Rotarian John Cavanaugh, coordinator of the event.
Collection bins for the Rotary Club “Coats Off Your Back” drive are located at the Northbrook Public Library; Northbrook Village Hall; North Suburban YMCA; Sunset Foods, Waterway Car Wash; Orange Theory. Additional locations include schools and senior home locations for staff and family drop-offs.  Please join Rotary in collecting NEW winter gear such as Jackets, Coats, Scarves, Hats, Gloves, and Boots for those served by PADS. For more information or to become a drop-off site, contact coordinator John Cavanaugh, via email at
ABOUT PADS:  PADS Lake County offers a comprehensive approach to combating homelessness with the compassion and respect we all deserve.  Since 1972, PADS has faithfully provided immediate, critical services to the neediest among us – individuals and families that are experiencing homelessness in Lake County. PADS is the first point of contact and the ONLY emergency shelter for the homeless in Lake County.  When someone experiences homelessness, regardless of the reason for it, they can come to PADS.  Once there, they know that they will not only get the immediate shelter they need to stay safe and warm, but also get comprehensive resources to get out of homelessness and back into housing.
PADS’ vision is to provide a path to stable housing and self-sufficiency for everyone who experiences homelessness in Lake County. Our greatest hope is to help end homelessness and ensure happy, healthy, and safe lives for generations to come.
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International Committee Savings Lives in Bolivia
Saving Lives through Neurosurgery in Sucre, Bolivia
Up to $2,000 cash and $2,000 DDF to support Global Grant #2118993
From the International Committee led by Jeff Tideman, with members including Jean Pierre (JP) DeHeeger, Larry Kanar, Ned Schechter and Dave Masters we have the following update that was approved in the November board meeting.
The committee liked that the request came from Marga Hewko, PE of the Chicago Club and that it will be implemented by Solidarity Bridge, a partner organization based in Evanston, with a 20+ year track record of sending medical missions and supplies to the area.
Reallocate $2,000 cash and $2,000 DDF from the Sauci project to early childhood development and literacy in South Africa Global Grant #2092536. Libertyville is the International Sponsor of this grant. It adds needed upgrades and supplies to facilities that are currently delivering services to kids under a previous global grant. There IS director says there is an individual donor who would donate $2,000 to our charitable foundation if it could be matched with DDF and Rotary Foundation funds. So we also ask that, if that donation is made to us, we commit that $2,000 + $2,000 DDF to the global grant.
The committee recognized it is a tight budget year due to diminished fundraising. The money we committed to ACE II, came from a refund of the Bedouin Grant not going through. The Sauci Water Project funds are recommended to be recommitted to South Africa. Thus, the IS committee is only recommending commitment of $2,000 cash from our charitable foundation.
Because of The Rotary Foundation making many Covid commitments, there is not likely to be any more global grants after 12/31/20. Thus, International Service is only giving $4,000 total for global grants for this Rotary year, which is about half of what our club usually does.
In 2019-20, our club committed $1,000 to Global Grant #1981369, a grant to help peasants in Ecuador for an organic produce coop. This grant is sponsored by the Winnetka/Northfield Club. The GG application is pending. It may not go through this Rotary year.
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To find out more about this important mission keep reading. Our club is partnering with “Rotary One” club in Chicago to work with Solidarity Bridge an Evanston based organization. Here is more about them from their website
Nearly one-third of the global disease burden stems from surgically treatable conditions. And while many global health initiatives focus on primary and preventative care, five billion people around the world still lack access to basic surgical services. Rooted in the tradition of Catholic social justice and a spirituality of solidarity, Solidarity Bridge seeks to respond to this concrete reality.
We work in partnership with the medical communities of Bolivia to increase access to safe, essential, and timely surgical care. With our partners, we operate four year-round surgical programs. Through short-term medical mission trips, we connect US medical practitioners to their peers in Bolivia. Together, we are building a healthier future.
Solidarity Bridge builds a healthier future with the people of Bolivia and Paraguay through domestic and international partnerships. In a spirit of mutuality, we train and equip medical communities, empowering them to provide high-complexity surgery and other health care for patients who lack access to treatment.
Through our partners, we operate four year-round surgical programs in general surgery, gynecologic surgery, heart surgery, and neurosurgery. Medical mission trips support these programs, bringing US doctors and nurses to Bolivia and Paraguay to work with local physicians, surgeons, nurses, and other medical personnel. Additionally, on our annual Multi-Specialty Mission Trip, US missioners work alongside their Bolivian colleagues to provide care to hundreds of patients in need.
Nearly one-third of the global disease burden stems from surgically treatable conditions. And while many global health initiatives focus on primary and preventative care, five billion people around the world still lack access to basic surgical services. Rooted in the tradition of Catholic social justice and a spirituality of solidarity, Solidarity Bridge seeks to respond to this concrete reality.
We work in partnership with the medical communities of Bolivia to increase access to safe, essential, and timely surgical care. With our partners, we operate four year-round surgical programs. Through short-term medical mission trips, we connect US medical practitioners to their peers in Bolivia. Together, we are building a healthier future.
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Give Back Day at Grill House
Rotary Club of Northbrook will be holding a Give-Back-Day on Tuesday, November 17th  hosted by Grill House from 10:30 am - 9 pm.  We get 20% back when anyone mentions Rotary when they order from the popular restaurant. These small fundraisers will benefit our club so please encourage, friends, family, colleagues to order lunch and dinner using the code word: Rotary!

Grill House offers a full menu of options to please everyone in the whole family. They are known for quality foods like their Oven Roasted Chicken, Grinders, Wraps and Black Angus Burgers, as well as a full offering of Greek favorites like Gyros, Souvlaki, Greek Potatoes and Homemade Spinach Pie. Don’t forget their full dinners with choices like Ribs, Seafood, Steaks and Chops with salads, rice and potatoes. You can order individual meals or Family Packs for 4-10 making dinner with your “bubble” easy!

Grill House is located at 3061 Dundee Rd., in the White Plains Plaza at Landwehr. Check out their menu at where you can place an order or call them at 847-205-2200.

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