10/13/19 – Partnerships


Partners in our Venture:

  1. World Hope
    1. We worked at World Hope and with their staff.
    2. They helped us because they provided us with workspace and connections in Sierra Leone. We helped them too because we expanded their reputation by involving them and tying them to our research.
    3. We should continue to participate in important projects so that we can continue our relationship with them.
  2. Betteh Bakery
    1. They allowed us to use their spaces for baking the muffins and roasting the sweet potatoes
    2. We helped them develop their business model and they gave us access to resources we needed. We attempted to make it an equal relationship but there were some kinks that we needed to work out.
    3. It would have been a stronger relationship if they were further along in their business and we were able to fully rely on them for the things that they said we could rely on them for.
  3. Wesleyan Church
    1. We were able to establish this partnership through our relationship with the Betteh Bakery. Betteh Bakery is owned by the Wesleyan Church.
    2. They allowed us to use their church as a platform to administer our questionnaires. They provided us with tables, chairs, and volunteers who helped us effectively gather data. We helped the church by helping them with their core goal: helping the people of Sierra Leone.
    3. To strengthen this relationship, we should be sure to keep communications strong even when we are not in Sierra Leone.
  4. Allieu Bangura, Director of Nutrition at World Hope International
    1. Partnered to help us drive our project ideas, connect us with Director of Food & Nutrition, and to give us general guidance in the first stages of our project
      1. Introducing nutritious product for them
    2. More communication
  5. Clinics/CHOs
    1. Our partnership with clinics and CHOs allowed us to gather data from mothers and children.
    2. The clinics allowed us to come and receive data from mothers and children. The mothers and children got to taste our food.
    3. This relationship was very beneficial. In order to make it more equitable and stronger we would need to bring enough food for everyone.
  6. University of Freetown
    1. Students from the university who interned at World Hope were able to help us with whatever we needed for our project.
    2. We gave their students real life experience in their fields that they were interested in and they helped us further our project. We worked together nicely but it was not necessarily equitable; we are students in charge of other students.
    3. This partnership would have been strengthened if we were positioned in closer locations.
  7. College of Engineering (funding partner)
    1. The college of engineering gave us funding to conduct our research in SL this summer.
    2. To strengthen this relationship we can write a publication to bring publicity to the university and the college.
  8. GELH (funding partner)
    1. GELH funded $1000 for each of us to travel to Sierra Leone.
    2. GELH helped us by making it financially feasible for us to go. We help them because we are giving them a good reputation and helping them contribute.
    3. It will be a stronger relationship after we do the GELH presentation at the end of October; they will know exactly what we did and how they helped us.
  9. Creative Inquiry Dept
    1. The Creative Inquiry Department gave us funding for in country expenses
    2. We gave them publicity for the project by coming back and producing projects
    3. We can make the relationship better by continuing to advocate and recruit new GSIF members
  10. Health Ministry of Sierra Leone
    1. Aminata Shamit Koroma- the Director of Food and Nutrition at the Ministry of Health in Sierra Leone is the originator of the project
    2. We would like general/official approval of our products from the Ministry of Health. If we hope to distribute our product in hospitals in the future, we will need a strong relationship with the Ministry of Health in order to gain necessary approvals as well.
    3. This partnership still needs to be established in order to see how each of us can benefit one another, but we could help the Ministry of Health by expanding the number of affordable foods that can be used to fight malnutrition and stunting.


Ultimate Outcome that we want to see:

  • Elimination or minimization of micronutrient deficiencies/malnutrition in children in Sierra Leone.

How to build a larger movement to get to this cause:

  • Build a coalition
    • Diverse group of individuals and organizations who work together to reach a common goal


Ultimate Goal: Elimination or minimization of micronutrient deficiencies/malnutrition in children in Sierra Leone.

Name: NewTrition Coalition


  • Sierra Leone President
    • Why the relationship is critical: approval of the products and support for marketing and distribution purpose
  • Sierra Leone Honorables
    • Why the relationship is critical: support for marketing and distribution purpose
  • Director of Food & Nutrition, Aminata Shamit Koroma
    • Why the relationship is critical: brains behind the project, so we would like her approval of the products we create
  • Ministry of Health and Sanitation
    • Why the relationship is critical: potentially need to approve the products we create in the future
  • WHI
    • Why the relationship is critical: help us build relationships with officials, companies, and mothers in Sierra Leone and give us credibility; can help us secure funding and approvals
    • Why the relationship is critical: Help advance the project on a more national level with a lot of power backing it; connects us to other organizations, such as the mother support group part of UNICEF, listed below.
  • Mother Support Groups
    • Why the relationship is critical: garners support of Mothers in the communities which would let potential customers trust us and our product.
  • Soccer Player
    • Why the relationship is critical: Help gather attention to the product by showing support to different groups of people, perhaps fathers, that tend to love soccer playing in their past time.
  • Sierra Leone Standards Bureau
    • Why the relationship is critical: Gives our product credibility and validity.

How will these organizations help us get these products? (shown in critical reasons)

What do the partners gain from being a part of the coalition?

Most notably, these partners all help forward the goal of minimizing and eliminating childhood malnutrition and stunting.  More community focused members, like the Mothers Support Groups, President, Honorables, and the Director of Food & Nutrition, all want Sierra Leone children to have better, long qualities of life and get that as the product succeeds with their support.  More global, national, or generally establish contributors help advance a global image of lowering childhood malnutrition and add credibility to their organizations for advancing impactful ventures.

9/29/19 – Case 4

Part 1 

Step 1: Determine the facts in the situation – obtain all of the unbiased facts possible. Clearly state the ethical issue.

  • Chetan owns a business and uses neem trees which are used for everything
  • Neem industry provides employment for the poorest people
  • Chetan has a seven generation history in this industry
  • 60 people employed
  • Neem – Chetan doesn’t know its formal name (Azadirchta indica), indigenous to India
  • medicinal purposes, food production, toiletries, fuel, and pesticides
  • Ten years ago, Tom Johnson, the Director of T (OOPS) travelled to India on vacation and discovered the neem seeds’ use as a potent pesticide
  • Tom got a patent for the products

The ethical dilemma is: Is it okay for OOPS to charge people in India royaltees on the patent even though they have been using the technology for years prior.

Step 2 and 3: Define the Stakeholders – those with a vested interest in the outcome  and their motivations

  • Chetan
    • Doesn’t want to pay the royaltees
    • Feels he owns the Neem products more than OOPS
    • Keep his tradition and culture alive
  • People in india employed in Neem products
    • Want to keep their jobs and maintain a salary
  • Tom Johnson (OOPS)
    • Make money
    • Tap into market in India
  • Neem product customers
    • Want to keep sacred neem
    • Want to stay at the same cost or lower
  • Chetan’s family
    • Want to keep in family to provide for them

What rights does Chetan have and is it ethical for the US company to uphold their patent rights?

Morally, it’s wrong to take the company out from under Chetan, but at the root there is no ethical issue with OOPS doing so.  Therefore, upholding the US patent is ethically fine to do.

Part 2 

Step 1: Determine the facts in the situation – obtain all of the unbiased facts possible. Clearly state the ethical issue.

  • Chetan owns a business and uses neem trees which are used for everything
  • Neem industry provides employment for the poorest people
  • Chetan has a seven generation history in this industry
  • 60 people employed
  • Neem – Chetan doesn’t know its formal name (Azadirchta indica), indigenous to India
  • medicinal purposes, food production, toiletries, fuel, and pesticides
  • Ten years ago, Tom Johnson, the Director of Oregon Organic Pesticide Services (OOPS) travelled to India on vacation and discovered the neem seeds’ use as a potent pesticide
  • Tom got a patent for the products

*Steps 2-3 same as Part 1*

Step 4: Formulate (at least three) alternative solutions – based on information available, to have a win-win situation for your relationship and your venture.

  1. Push non-pesticide products
    1. Who saves face?
      1. Chetan and company by still upholding values and cultural image.
  2. Collaborate with Tom’s OOPS company to get the original employees jobs there
    1. Who saves face?
      1. Chetan saves face because he is able to give his employees jobs but he might not be able to get a job and he will lose the business that he has worked so hard for.
  3. Offer severance package to employees with money he already has and exit the business
    1. Who saves face?
      1. Chetan somewhat saves face because he gives them the money that they need to survive until they are able to find another job but the employees might still be mad about this and could still cause problems for him.
  4. Sell company out entirely to OOPS, use the money to pay severances
    1. Who saves face?
      1. Chetan but same problems as both of the above things
  5. Fight the patent

Best Solution:  Collaborate with Tom so that Chetan can sell out his company but the workers he had employed get to keep their jobs under OOPS in India, or they get a severance package if they need to leave the company.  Chetan general manager of those markets so that the employees have more trust rather than working under someone from OOPS.

09/22/19 – Case 3


  • Facts
      1. Gruel (maize & banana) does not provide key nutrients
      2. Mothers like them gruel
      3. There are pesticides used on the crops
      4. ~35% of children are nutritionally stunted
      5. Want to transition from breastfeeding at about 24 months
      6.  HIV/AIDS is very prevalent in this region.
      7. The gruel is integrated into a child’s diet to complement breastfeeding until they are ~24 months of age
      8. The WHO wants women to stop breastfeeding at 6 months
      9.  Mothers in the area firmly believe that the gruel is highly beneficial for their children, but scientific research has shown that it does not provide some key nutrients
      10. The longer a child nurses when the mother is HIV+, the greater the chance that the virus will be transmitted to the child
      11. Mother to Child Transmission of HIV is common
      12. Women’s cooperative grant
      13. Women are skeptical of the porridge
      14. Pesticides used can cause adverse health defects in children
  • Stakeholders
      1. Mothers
      2. Children
      3. Women’s cooperative
      4. WHO
      5. Healthcare system
      6. Local cash crop farmers
      7. Pesticide companies
      8. Donor
  • Motivations
      1. To improve lives, children’s health, support local business
      2. To stop mother to child HIV transmission rates
      3. Improve the nutritional status of children
      4. Prevent stunted growth
      5. Improve the livelihoods of rural households
      6. Make money off of local crops
      7. To make money
      8. Want the money to support the causes they want and be successful
  • Solutions
    • Triage system to diagnose mothers with HIV before birth
        1. Ethical Principle/code: Utilitarian
          1. Useless to prevent against HIV if the baby gets it during the birth process
        2. Pros: HIV can be better monitored for women, helps to ensure that the baby does not get HIV, women who test positive can seek treatment and help stop transmission
        3. Cons: added task to medical staff
      1. The current solution is: Fortify the current gruel with vitamins and minerals but has a problem with pesticide use
        1. Ethical Principle/code: Virtue –  process also matters too
        2. Pros: would sufficiently replace breastfeeding and meet nutrition needs
        3. Cons: wouldn’t eliminate women’s skepticism. Would still have pesticides
      2. Eliminate crops in the porridge that have a higher risk of pesticide harm i.e. utilized covered crops like pumpkins, bananas for making gruel
        1. Ethical Principle/code: Utilitarian – the greatest good for the greatest number
        2. Pros:  Simple, no added cost or big change of process
        3. Cons: Fewer nutrients from losing various other foods
      3. Create a protocol that people can follow to properly wash crops
        1. Ethical Principle/code: Virtue
        2. Pros: Helps reduce amounts of pesticides left on crops, creates healthy habits, could prevent ingestion of harmful bacteria left on crops
        3. Cons: even with the wash, there may still be pesticides present on the crops, people can get sick if the protocol isn’t followed properly
      4. Look into pesticide chemicals and decide if there are “cleaner” pesticides or more natural methods for getting rid of pests
        1. Ethical Principle/code: Duty
        2. Pros: less toxic pesticides used=not as harmful effects on the body, pests likely won’t destroy crops as much as no pesticide use
        3. Cons: there is already a negative connotation regarding pesticides people may not believe there are “cleaner” pesticides
    • Recruit specific farmers that practice safer growing w/o pesticides
        1. Ethical Principle/code: Duty
        2. Pros: it could support local business and keep the economy strong in the community, it would eliminate the stigma around having food made with produce grown with pesticides. We could get a deal with a farmer for cheaper prices
        3. Cons: these farmers might not be able to handle the amount of produce required,
    • Seek assistance, as appropriate
      1. https://www.azurihealth.co.ke/
      2. https://www.pan-uk.org/health-effects-of-pesticides/
  • The best course of action
      1. Combination of A & F Solutions
        1. Attacks all necessary problems, educates, gives opportunities for more jobs, teaching the mothers the dangers of passing HIV + having safe, nutritious alternative to offer → progress
  • Implications
    1. Women can protect their children
      1. We would want to start with a small population whose health clinics have the infrastructure, time and money to screen mothers for HIV
    2. Women will know their HIV status, minimizing the HIV transmission rates
      1. Provide education on what steps they should take if they have been diagnosed HIV positive
    3. Supporting the local economy
      1. Creates social mobility
      2. Educate farmers on how to grow top quality produce without pesticides

Ethical Question at Play:  Is it fine to lower the risk of HIV/AIDS but at the risk of adding sickness from pesticides, how to balance the risk of passing on HIV/AIDS to children and the risk of children getting sick from pesticides


  • Facts, business thriving:
      1. Women work for nine hours a day and make about $3
      2. Women save time traveling to market (and $)
      3. Happy with the coop and the sense of identity
      4. Women turn over their money to men in the family
      5. Men waste the money
      6. One of seven members of the leadership council
      7. Have six months left on the committee
      8. Committee wants things to change
      9. A patriarchal society where men have say on money
      10. Though the cooperative is thriving, it is not achieving the twin social outcomes of improving the nutritional status of children and the livelihoods of rural households.
  • Stakeholders:
    1. Mothers
    2. Children
    3. Women’s cooperative
    4. Local cash crop farmers
    5. Husbands
  • Motivations:
    1. Want to be fed
    2. Improve the nutritional status of children
    3. Prevent stunted growth
    4. Want the money to buy personal stuff they want
  • Solutions:
      1. The choice to take a certain number of gruel products and $ per day
        1. How does it solve the problem?
          1. Pros: controls money flow going home, gives women choice to just take food for kids if that’s what they want and is needed
          2. Cons: the husband might be angry that not as much money is coming home
        2. How does it save face of those involved?
          1. Gives mothers the option to what they want without confrontation with husbands
        3. Implications on relationships
          1. Short-term: confused husbands, might be frustrated
          2. Long-term: adjusted, even distribution of food for kids and money for family when needed or want it
        4. Implications on the venture
          1. Short-term:  supports women instantly for wants
          2. Long-term:  further advertise food in local community
      2. Potential Solution: Women receive vouchers instead of money. The vouchers can be used to buy coop food
        1. How does it solve the problem?
          1. Pros: Money gets spent on food for the children, women in control of voucher and how it gets spent
          2. Cons: Husband mad that there isn’t any extra money coming in, the voucher can’t be put towards other goods needed (can only get food), does not support women selling food in markets (only within the co op)
        2. How does it save face of those involved?
          1. Puts blame of money distribution on the co-op, not the women
        3. Implications on relationships
          1. Short-term: women are protected from unfortunate consequences
          2. Long-term: animosity and backlash
        4. Implications on the venture
          1. Short-term: ensuring women are getting food to feed their children
          2. Long-term: principal-agent problem and company store logic
      3. Potential Solution: Mobile money credit–women are not given cash but rather a phone credit that can only be used by them so men do not have access.
        1. How does it solve the problem?
          1. Pros: women have full control of the money, not tangible so it can be hidden. They can spend it on food and other items the family needs
          2. Cons: How often do women have their own phone? Will the money be easily accessible to them?
        2. How does it save face of those involved?
          1. Lack of accessibility to men can be blamed on the co-op, not the women
        3. Implications on relationships
          1. Short-term: women are protected from unfortunate consequences
          2. Long-term: animosity and backlash
        4. Implications on the venture
          1. Short-term: ensuring women are getting food to feed their children
          2. Long-term: women need to have cellphones which they may not have all the time depending on income levels per month
  • Seek assistance:
      1. Shame the men–stamp pacifier under the bill
      2. Save family’s spending receipts
        1. If you turn them in and show that you are spending responsibly, then you can get a discount or get paid more
          1. Incentivise men to make responsible purchases
      3. Teach women how to build equity
        1. Can grow and support further farming operations
  • Best course of action:
    1. Solution 1 would be the best course of action we came up with, as this gives the family autonomy still on spending money personally, but the women have priority first to opt into taking home more food meals for their children if food for them is how they would rather use that percentage of their money.

09/15/19 – Case 2

Step 1: Facts

  1. Jack is American on social venture
  2. A youth center in Kenya
  3. Int. donor Org. sent gifts for the children at the center
  4. Kids are younger than 14,  4 of them did not receive gifts ceremoniously
  5. Jack in charge of handing out gifts
  6. Jack was thanked for the gifts by the kids
  7. Kids were convinced the gifts were from jack
  8. Jack is going to be there for 5 months (lots of contact w the kids)
  9. Kids that didn’t get gifts blamed jack
  10. Staff did not care about the kids not getting gifts
  11. Staff calls Jack a “children’s rights activist” because they were annoyed that Jack brought up the 4 kids and how he felt awkward
    1. Insight: Jack might not understand the constraints that they are working in
      1. Could have wrongfully/rightfully citisized how the staff run the center

Step 2: Stakeholders & Motivations

  1. Jack
    1. Want to be liked by the kids/wants them to be happy (save face)
    2. Wants to keep a good relationship with the center staff
    3. Doesn’t want to standout uncomfortably anymore than he already does
  2. Kids that got gifts
    1. Like jack for getting gifts
    2. Think Jack will always get them gifts – makes him “cool”
  3. Kids that did not get gifts
    1. Want to have the same dignity as the kids that received them ceremoniously
    2. Thinks Jack doesn’t care about them
  4. Youth center staff
    1. Don’t want their work to be seen as unfair
    2. Does not care about the issues of the kids
    3. Get Jack to make a specific kind of effort with the kids
    4. Want to be seen as people who are doing well and care about the kids
  5. Int. donor Org. (Gift funders)
    1. Want to look good, need to uphold a reputation that they are doing good, therefore they sent gifts to the children at this center
    2. Want to successfully present nice gesture
  6. University (Jack)
    1. Want to look good
    2. Want the social venture to prosper
  7. Parents of the kids
    1. Want to send kid to good youth center

Step 4: Alternative Solutions

  • Jack finds/makes/orders gifts to ceremoniously give to the other kids in front of the group
      1. Solution pros: all the kids would be happy and get their gifts
      2. Solution cons:
      3. Saving face:
      4. Relationships impact ST: The staff might be annoyed with him.
      5. Relationships impact LT: This makes the staff feel that he is a child activist, thus they might feel and aversion from him, as well as possibly not doing this event again and not want to work with him
      6. Venture impacts ST: There might be some impact on the way people look at jack and the venture based on the actions and the fact that he has to redo the event because he got the number wrong. Huge planing impact and cost.
      7. Venture impacts LT: People will remember this event and it might help people forget about this event, but it might also make them remember it forever.
  • Jack waits for new gifts to come and gives them to the black hat kids first
      1. Solution pros: makes the black hat kids feel special/included
      2. Solution cons: what if not enough gifts come again and other kids don’t get a gift
      3. Saving face:
      4. Relationships impact ST:  new gifts = fun, and excitement in kids
      5. Relationships impact LT: other kids might be annoyed these kids got both hats and gifts
      6. Venture impacts ST: He will probs take a hit for not giving gifts, and screwing the poach. Lots of time and effort
      7. Venture impacts LT: Might fix social problem, in the end, may make it worse.
  • Jack wears a black hat every day (frequently) to make the other kids feel special
    1. Solution pros: the kids may feel more included, respected, or dignified since the adult is also wearing their hat, solves the issue with the staff because they all move on, simple, fast, easy
    2. Solution cons: it’s not as ceremonious as the other gifted kids; May also cause problems among the kids who have the hats and don’t have the hat
      1. Saving face:
      2. Relationships impact ST: saves face w kids who didn’t get gifts before, excites them
      3. Relationships impact LT: extreme tensions among kids who do and don’t have hats
      4. Venture impacts ST: tension from the staff thinking Jack initially overreacted may last but will hopefully fade
      5. Venture impacts LT: mends the relationships with all the children and quietly solves the issue with the staff as long as no one holds a grudge
  • Jack approaches the staff to try and save his own face by suggesting they change their perspectives on working with the children
      • Solution pros: Changes the staff mentality to help improve Jack’s experience for the rest of the time he will work there
      • Solution cons: Coming up with a solution that approaches the stern admins instead of the children.
      • Saving face:  Potential for failure means the potential for securing loss of social influence. He may lose dignity in the eyes of the staff. The conversation would be very straight-forward, and potentially change opinions overnight, leading to better relationship development overall.
          1. Relationships impact ST: tension with staff. Children are still mad.
          2. Relationships impact LT: Eased relationship with staff and Jack. Staff and children have a better relationship.
          3. Venture impacts ST: Less productivity and collaboration.
          4. Venture impacts LT: Increased levels of collaboration that would otherwise not be achievable.

Step 5: Additional Notes 

  1. Kenyan gift culture: Kenyan Gift Culture
    1. Guests invited to someone’s home may bring a small gift of appreciation.
    2. Common gifts to give are flowers and tea leaves.
    3. In rural areas of Kenya, coffee, sugar, flour, and maize are usually given. These gifts are presented in a woven bag (‘kiondo’ in Kikuyu). The host will return the bag at the end of the visit after placing gifts for their visitor inside.
    4. It is impolite to return a kiondo empty.
  2. American Gift Culture:  American Culture
    1. If you are invited to a wedding, baby showers, bar mitzvah, or other celebration, it is expected that you will bring a gift. Unless you know the host very well, the gift should be modest in value, about $20.
    2. For a wedding, the bride will have “registered” at one or two local department stores, indicating the items and styling she prefers. You can buy the couple a gift that isn’t listed, but most people buy something listed on the registry. If you buy an item listed on the registry, be sure to tell the store that you are doing this, so that the couple doesn’t receive duplicate gifts. For a baby shower, bring a gift appropriate for a newborn baby. For a bar mitzvah, bring a gift appropriate for a 13-year-old boy. Bar Mitzvah gifts tend to be more formal in nature. For example, a gold-plated Cross pen is quite common. Personalizing the pen by engraving the recipient’s full name will be appreciated.
    3. If you wish to give a gift when you leave to return to your home country, the best gift is something that is unique to your country. It does not need to be especially valuable or rare, just reminiscent of your home. Possibilities include a book about your country, an inexpensive handicraft or piece of art, or something else that reflects your culture. If the children collect coins and stamps, they would be very pleased with a set of your country’s coins or a selection of mint stamps from your country. Items that are common in your country but difficult to find in the USA are also good.


09/06/19 – Case 1

Step 1 – Determine the Facts in the Situation:

    • There are pathogens in the water
    • People may not know about the pathogen
    • Only found in Lesotho, South Africa – will be there ONLY two weeks, 10 academic researchers
    • Requires assistance from community for testing
    • Publications are expected
    • A profile can help develop chemical additives to make the drinking water safe

Main Questions: Is it ethical to do this study?  Is this a human research study?  Should people be compensated?

Step 2 – Define the Stakeholders (Step 3, motivations, sub-bullets):

  1. Academic researchers
    • Publications, credibility, impact
  2. The academic institution (funders)
    • Integrity, liability, publicity, minimize cost and maximize value
  3. Community members
    • Livelihood, knowledge (kept in the dark), Compensation
  4. Chief/government
    • Image and safety (not take advantage of his community)
  5. Publicists
    • Quality research, knowledge (to move forward), marketability (to publish/ publicity)
  6. Chemists that can make the stuff
    • Quality research, market, profit

Step 4 – Alternative Solutions:

All determined solutions would start with informing the community members, displaying the importance of the research and how it can help in future, this way the people are more comfortable and potentially, more willing to help advance the project.

  1. Do the study and pay the community members for transport
    • Ethical Principle:  beneficence
    • Pros:  Keeps community happy, “simple”
    • Cons: more money
  2. Give them cleaner water, food, dinner
    • Ethical Principle:  beneficence
    • Pros:  Keeps them healthier short term vs doing nothing
    • Cons:  Expensive, not sustainable
  3. Don’t pay them, thank them
    • Ethical principle:  Virtue-based
    • Pros:  not added cost or work
    • Cons:  could make community mad, worsen relations, network difficulties, look bad on institution
  4. Recognize them in the publications (credit)
    • Ethical Principle:  beneficence
    • Pros:  morally fit, helps the village and those specific people, prioritized in future things (chemical additives), could provide copy to the people who helped
    • Cons:  long term, not guaranteed, people won’t care will never see it won’t understand that being beneficial, won’t want flock of people → wanna be under the radar, unwanted attention

Steps 5-7:

assistance, best course, implications

In deciding which solution would be the best course of action, it was important to draw off personal anecdotes each of us in our discussion group had to consider, as well as any previous studies and relevant information.  For instance, the approach to give those who help us (potentially the drivers) clean water would not be the best choice because while it is a kind gesture that would be appreciated, it is not sustainable, and therefore could create more problems for their personal way of live or economy, etc.  After considering all of our outlets, the best solution I would choose would be to inform the community, not pay, and offer to recognize them in publications.  If we went about doing this, I would start by meeting with the community chief of the villages that could help us, similar to what our Malnutrition team did when we went to villages to complete interviews.  In doing this, it gains the chief’s respect and begins a connection such that he/she may be more willing to help us conduct the study.  After doing this, we would ask if they could recruit a few of the best people informed on where the water sources are to show us around to the different locations.  For these people, I would then offer to publicize their help, and upon completion of the study I would mail them a copy of the publications with their names to see for themselves.  In this way, it would positively attract to the community memebers, and it would maintain a solid relationship with the researchers and the community should they need to return for further studies.


08/30/19 – Fieldwork Takeaways

KEY POINTS learned:

  1. Plan A, B, C, D…
  2. Consent
  3. Sense of community

KEY POINTS Professional Development:

  1. Systems Thinking
  2. Understanding different cultures → effective work strategies/communications
  3. Decision making

KEY POINTS Personal Development:

  1. Resilience
  2. Autonomy
  3. Authority

SUMMARY (in order of learned, professional, personal):

I learned a lot about our project concept as a whole on our trip to Sierra Leone.  I learned how much of a serious conversation things like manufacturing in a reliable workspace, pudding storage and preservation, distribution channels and marketing components, and everything surrounding the pharmacy board, shelf life testing, and the therapy food debate truly are.  There is way more to consider now that we have seen the country and its functions first-hand.  During fieldwork, I learned it is imperative to have a backup plan for your backup plan’s backup plan… In-country, things never seem to go the way you want, nevertheless, the way you expect either.  This meant we quickly would have to make a new plan on the spot and be ready to pivot with a fresh idea when needed to still have a productive day and accomplish what we needed to.  Another big takeaway was regarding the importance of consent during interviews.  When we wanted to approach mothers and families to conduct our taste-testing and surveys, it was crucial that we started off with a consent reading.  And even more so than that, we had to be sure our message and the question of their participation were getting across correctly.  The language barrier definitely made this difficult, and some translators would reverberate our message differently than others, so we had to constantly be checking to make sure the consent was given properly and the mother was consciously making her choice.  If not, sometimes we would run into problems where mothers seemed uncomfortable but would just go along with it because they didn’t know there was an option to partake or not.  One time a mother said no because she believed we were going to poison her!  To each their own… at least that proved she was getting asked for consent correctly, and she chose to say no!  Lastly, my favorite part was simply learning about all of these(GSIF) people.  Khanjan put 30 students in a room and forced us to begrudgingly participate, engage, and present with one another on our projects.  Many would probably agree a silent haze of competition was always in the room, but after going on this trip, these people are more friends, colleagues, and a handful of role models I never knew before.  It was really comforting to meet everyone and realize they’re (mostly) not scary at all!  And even starting my Junior year, I have new faces I look out for with a smile in all my classes.

When reflecting on my professional developments, I think one of the biggest was understanding the usefulness of systems thinking and applying it.  I am generally a pretty strategic-minded person, but when our team hit hiccups in the first few days of fieldwork, I could not come up with a way around it.  Khanjan helped us introduce a new way to delegate roles amongst our team, and learning to think of the components to the project in a more systematic way like this made it much easier to juggle all of our roles without stepping on each other’s toes.  Another big one was understanding cross-cultural differences in the workplace.  This extending as far as different mindsets, communication strategies, traditional or generational considerations, and certainly the language barrier.  It was interesting to see how certain word choice we perceived to be common sense and easily understood on our survey turned out to be complicated or just not colloquial.  We had to do a lot of regrouping to make sure we were communicating the best way possible, and this pertains to meetings, scheduling, and tasking assignments with locals as well.  If we wanted something done, we needed to make sure it was clear and concise and a blanket, “This needs to be done.”  If we tried too hard to be what we deem polite or respectful, our messages would get lost.  Finally, decision making was another large factor I have improved on.  Since, as mentioned before, things do not always go according to plan, if we need to keep moving it is important to just make a call.  There isn’t enough time to delay and ponder, we had to move along, despite any changes throwing us off.

Personally, the three things I improved the most over this summer were my resilience, autonomy, and authority(self-advocacy).  With my other internship having me a quick extra lap around the globe before this, I was very impressed with my resilience and determination the last few weeks.  My body was put through a lot but I was able to accomplish so much every day, even when I thought I had reached my limit or couldn’t bear another bean.  With so many hectic events, I was able to hone in on what was important and what needed to be done; I could take things as they come, live with it, and make the best out of situations.  Moreover, my independence definitely was tested and grew.  In Sierra Leone it very well could have been easy to brush issues along, let them build up, and accomplish very little.  But, I worked to make things happen—we all did.  If we hadn’t, nothing would have been achieved.  The experience was entirely what we make of it, and I like to think I made the most I could have.  Finally, reflecting on the power of this opportunity, I recognized how much self-advocacy I had to do TO get things done.  I quickly realized that if we wanted something, we had to spearhead goals and turn them into accomplishments.

05/05/19 – M&E Plan, Logic Model, and SROI

M & E Plan:

Logic Model:

*With Assumptions:

  • Children will continuously eat enough of our therapeutic food to improve their nutrition levels
  • Children will enjoy eating our food
  • Mothers will be willing to pay for our food
  • Nurses and CHWs will continue to monitor malnutrition

Social Return on Investment:

Health spending encompasses 9% of Sierra Leone’s national budget, and mothers and children under 5 receive free healthcare. Additionally, Sierra Leone has one of the higher GDPs of underdeveloped countries, but is lower in terms of health, education, and standard of living. If our product sold at just 500 units/day in the beginning, this would impact approximately 167 children under the age of 5. [2] With that being said, SROI does not include saving the government money. Our product aims to improve the micronutrient levels in children and limit the number of chronically malnourished kids. Malnutrition causes issues with a child’s cognitive development, so if we can impact around 150 children’s nutrition levels, those 150 children will have more of an ability to learn and succeed in school and eventually contribute to the economy. Well nourished children are also less susceptible to disease because their immune system are more healthy, so our product could impact savings to health services in Sierra Leone. Because families are not responsible for paying for their child’s healthcare when they are under the age of 5, they are not necessarily saving money they would spend on healthcare. Our product will be at least five times cheaper than other therapeutic foods, like Bennimix, but because they are not responsible for paying for healthcare until after their child is over 5, it cannot be used to truly quantify the success of our product. It is difficult to give a value of our SROI ratio, but it is something we will continue to research and try to quantify.


  1. https://dhsprogram.com/pubs/pdf/FR297/FR297.pdf
  2. https://www.afro.who.int/sites/default/files/2017-08/Sierra%20Leone%20Health%20Sector%20%20Performance%20Report%202016.pdf


04/30/19 – Funding Sources & Income Statements

  • For funding sources, we have compiled the following after some research:

In the design phase, these are two resources that could fit well for our project:

ASPEN Nestlé Health Science Enteral Nutrition Research Grant  https://www.nutritioncare.org/Research/ARRF/Nestlé_Health_Science_Enteral_Nutrition_Research_Grant/

The ASPEN Rhoda’s Research Foundation this year introduced a new grant opportunity, the Nestlé Health Science Enteral Nutrition Research Grant.  The focus of this grant is to address nutrient intake in the critically ill.  This would fit as an option for our malnutrition product because it supports projects trying to address clinical problems due to nutrition.  The budget of the grant is up to $50,000 for a year of research, and this money would help us advance our product development by funding ingredients, supplements, cooking supplies, shelf life testing, and more.

ICATCH Grant  https://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/Sections/Section-on-International-Child-Health/Pages/ICATCH-Grants.aspx

The ICATCH grant is a possible source of funding for our malnutrition product because they support projects that are developing a product that improves the lives of children in low-income countries (https://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/Sections/Section-on-International-Child-Health/Pages/ICATCH-Grants.aspx). The grant is for a total of $6,000 over the course of 3 years and can be used for the development and implementation of the product into the country. This year specifically, the applications focusing on infant health are being prioritized over adolescents. This money will go towards acquiring necessary supplies such as micronutrient supplements, ingredients for our product, and cooking supplies.

In the dissemination phase, two resources that are applicable to our project for funding are:

VentureWell DEBUT Grant https://venturewell.org/debut/

The National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) and VentureWell are funding the DEBUT (Design by Biomedical Undergraduate Teams) challenge, which is a grant application for undergraduate students working on innovative solutions to unmet health and clinical problems.  This fits into our project since we are developing solutions to address malnutrition in children in developing countries.  Teams of students submit proposals to this challenge and can be awarded up to $20,000 in prizes for strong applicants.  This money would help in the dissemination part of our project by recognizing design achievements, and then helping fund marketing and economic feasibility to advance the products.

Izumi Foundation Grant  http://izumi.org/funding-grants/recent-grants-awarded/

The Izumi foundation (http://izumi.org/funding-grants/recent-grants-awarded/) is a great opportunity to receive funding for our venture project. The foundation is dedicated to supporting projects that create lasting solutions to critical problems in developing countries, such as malnutrition.  The foundation has even funded a similar venture focused on malnutrition based in Rwanda, which means they would likely support more work in this topic with a strong enough application.  In the past, projects have been funded for anywhere from $50,000 to $200,000. We will write a proposal for funding that will be used to train and pay the initial workers for our venture. This would be a funding source that we would apply for in the future after we have finalized our products and determined that the product would be popular in Sierra Leone.

  • Our team has compiled a detailed income statement for the next two years (in six month intervals) of our venture, with made assumptions underlying our model:

In order to create an income statement for our products we evaluated the cost of goods sold (COGS), overhead costs, profit, and revenue. At this point, we are still somewhat unsure of exactly how our product will be manufactured because we have a few different recipes and are unsure of what equipment we will need. One possibility is that we rent our own manufacturing space, and another is that we rent space or facilities in a restaurant that is already operating in Sierra Leone. We performed the income statement for

For COGS, we made a few assumptions. First, the population of Makeni is around 125,000. https://www.statistics.sl/images/StatisticsSL/Documents/final-results_-2015_population_and_housing_census.pdf Based on census data, we estimated that the population includes around 5,000 children below the age of 2 https://sierraleone.unfpa.org/sites/default/files/pub-pdf/Population%20structure%20Report_1.pdf. If 75% of these children consume our product 3x per day, we need to make around 11,250 units per day. In early stages, we will assume that we are only making around 500 units per day. The quantities are slightly inaccurate because they are they quantities we need in order to make around 1/2 cup of our pudding which is slightly more than the actual serving size of the unit. So, these costs are actually overestimates. With that being said, we did not include general kitchen utensils and equipment (tables, trays, other packaging materials) that may be necessary. The information for COGS is shown below (assuming 500 units per day).

*see first chart*

Overhead costs that we will definitely need to consider are electricity and rent. It will also be useful to have a supervisor that can oversee how our product is selling and how children and families like our product.

*see second chart*

With this information, we were able to calculate our projections every six months. We assumed that we would produce 500 units/day for the whole two years, but ideally, we will have the resources to produce more as time goes on. For example, if we produced/sold 1,000 units per day in Year 2, we would have a greater profit in Year 2.

*see third chart*