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Taimaka Project

Gombe, Nigeria


Tackling acute childhood malnutrition through treatment and innovation.

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What we do:

Acute malnutrition is the leading cause of under-five childhood deaths globally. We're working to change that.

Taimaka is a joint Nigerian-American NGO operating in northeastern Nigeria, where we 1) treat thousands of children with acute malnutrition and 2) incubate cost-effective interventions, designed to improve the cost and quality of malnutrition treatment globally.

To improve the cost-effectiveness of global malnutrition treatment, we collaborate with academics to rigorously test and incubate a portfolio of candidate innovations each year in our CMAM program. If these candidate innovations prove effective, we advocate for changes to global standards of care and help other implementers adopt our innovations at scale. If we can reduce the cost of treatment by 1% through innovation, we can free up $3.4 million already spent on malnutrition globally and treat an additional 50,000 children a year, in perpetuity.

We have won acclaim from Founders Pledge, which recommends us as an early-stage charity; USAID, which funded us through its Feed the Future program; and the D-Prize, which we won. The Center for Effective Global Action at U.C. Berkeley wrote that Taimaka “combines the rigor of academia with the dynamism of a startup,” and Innovations for Poverty Action commended Taimaka’s “commitment to evidence-based impact.”

Why we do it:

45.4 million children globally suffer from acute malnutrition, resulting in over 1 million preventable deaths every year. In Nigeria, where we work, over 100 children die every hour from malnutrition. Children that do survive suffer from permanent setbacks to the neurodevelopment, immune systems, and future earnings potential.

At the same time, highly cost-effective treatment exists. Children can be treated for around $60 with program-wide recovery rates of over 90%. We work to make treatment 1) accessible to children who would otherwise have zero access to it in Nigeria and 2) make treatment cheaper and more effective through innovation, so that more children globally can access it.

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Poverty Alleviation
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Food Security
A 501(c)(3) nonprofit, EIN 84-3964208