ANA Maria Teles De Norões

Ashoka Fellow
Brazil,
Fellow Since 1995
IPREDE-Inst. de Prev. a Desnutricaoe a Excepicionalidade

Citation

This profile was prepared when Ana Maria Teles de Norões was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1995.
The New Idea
Ana Teles founded the Institute for the Prevention of Malnutrition and Disability in 1986 to revolutionize the way in which the medical community views and treats the problem of malnutrition and thus to improve the life prospects of the many children victimized by hunger arising from the systemic poverty in which they live. Ana Teles founded the Institute for the Prevention of Malnutrition and Disability in 1986 to revolutionize the way in which the medical community views and treats the problem of malnutrition and thus to improve the life prospects of the many children victimized by hunger arising from the systemic poverty in which they live. Before Ana began her project, most cases of severe malnutrition in the Brazilian state of Ceará were treated in large public hospitals, where the response was confined to emergency measures aimed at preventing imminent death. In marked contrast, her institute offers sustained and comprehensive care, including food, medication and training for family members to reduce the likelihood of relapse. Treatment is tailored to the needs of each child, ranging from emergency care for severely debilitated children to periodic outpatient programs for less severe cases. Since instances of malnutrition are rarely an isolated phenomenon, every positive diagnosis of severe childhood malnutrition is followed with examinations of all family members. In an effort to reduce the incidence of malnutrition over the longer term, Ana's community-based clinics and information centers provide training on prevention strategies for community leaders and promote related community projects. These include neighborhood vegetable gardens and "living pharmacies," in which medicinal plants and herbs are grown organically to provide supplemental nutrition.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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