The leading cause of death in Vietnam for children under the age of 5 is malnutrition. There are currently 26 million children and many of our children’s diet do not yet provide enough energy, nutrients and micronutrients for optimal growth and development. 1 out of every 3 children is stunted – and in rural provinces those rates are even higher.
Image: Children in rural area of Vietnam
Aid For Kids (AFK) a non-profit organization established in 2005 in the USA with a local branch in Vietnam is committed to improving children’s lives. Its mission is to improve the lives of children worldwide. AFK has been truly committed to running a wide range of project in Vietnam such as teaching English to Vietnamese students, providing scholarships to underprivileged children in rural and poor areas, and organizing mission trips that provided free dental care to young children.
Aid for Kids currently is working to reduce the number of malnourished Vietnamese children through the Nutrition Project. This program focuses on long term success by using the Integrated Approach: teaching mothers how to prepare healthy meals with available local ingredients along with the distribution of nutritional sachets Bibomix to add to the children’s meals.
Photo: A boy preparing home meal
AFK’s Nutrition Program will be funded by a community crowdfunding project – the Home Dinner Xmas Charity Concert 2015 led by The Empty Pockets band. The Empty Pockets is an American rock ‘n’ roll band from Chicago, Illinois. The band is composed of 4 members: Josh Solomon (guitar and lead vocals); Nate Bellon (bass and lead vocals); Danny Rosenthal (drums); and Erika Brett (keyboard and lead vocals).
John Solomon has a very special place in his heart for Vietnam. Many years ago, Josh traveled to Vietnam with his mother, Joan Hallagan. She was in the process of adopting Josh’s 16 year old brother from an orphanage in Ho Chi Minh City. That journey made a deep and long lasting impression upon Josh. Sinc that initial visit, he returned to Vietnam many times to visit shelters, orphanages, and to help children here.
This talented band will be performing at 2 bars as Saigon Ranger and Van’s Unforgettable on 24th & 25th December before the concert at The Conservatory of Ho Chi Minh City on 26th December with all the profit being donated to the AFK’ Nutrition Program. In addition to band’s performance, The Empty Pockets band will be donating $3,000 to AFK’s Nutrition Program.
Income from ticket sales (estimated at $10,000) will be donated to the AFK Nutrition Project to deliver training & nutrient supplements at selected orphanages and schools in 4 areas including Dien Bien, Khanh Hoa, Ben Tre and Ho Chi Minh city. In addition, an auction session within the concert and an online crowd-funding campaign will directly contribute another $5,000 which adds up to the total amount cash of donation at $15,000.
Home Dinner does not only aim to raise money. It also is set to spread awareness and message. We want to remind everyone not to forget about the importance of a family dinners and that there are still many helpless children who need our support.
Image: The Empty Pockets