MSF Distributes High Nutritional Value Biscuits in Mongkok

Searching for Malnourished Children on the Street

Without any fat track or fat caliper, how can we check if a child is malnourished or not? Who can put his arm through a tiny hole which is smaller than the size of a five-dollar coin? What does a malnourished child eat under supplementary feeding treatment? Together with a dozen of healthy children, Médecins Sans Frontières Hong Kong (MSF-HK) holds a street action in Mongkok today to answer these questions.

It is estimated that the number of refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) has reached 33 million. Because of war, violence or persecution, they are forced to flee their homes and seek refuge. The living condition and sanitation of the displaced camps are very poor. Shortage of food and clean drinking water are common problems in the camps. Many refugees or IDPs, especially children, are likely to face the nutritional crisis.

From 27 September to 4 October, MSF-HK is going to launch the "Refugee Camp in the City" Exhibition. This exhibition will be the biggest of its kind in the history of MSF-HK and will be composed of 14 units, including shelters built of wood by the refugees and IDPs, different types of tents and medical tents of a clinic, therapeutic feeding centre, cholera treatment centre, and latrine and water station.

Visitors of the Exhibition will have a chance to get into the tent, taste the high nutritional value biscuits, namely BP5, for malnourished children and have a touch to some tyre-made shoes, patchwork rag doll, utensils used by the displaced etc. to experience the life of the displaced.

In order to let Hong Kong public have a slight savour of the plight of malnourished children running for their lives, MSF-HK distributes the BP5 biscuits in Mongkok Pedestrian Street today. Each piece of BP5 has 254kcal and weights 55g. It is made of baked wheat flour, vegetable oil and sugars and is rich of protein, vitamins and minerals.

In the event, a group of healthy and energetic Hong Kong children aged 3 to 7 express their concern towards some malnourished children through dancing. They also demonstrate how to use the MUAC (Mid-Upper Arm Circumference) bracelet to assess the degree of malnutrition of children in the daily work of MSF.

With special thanks to Phoebe Yeung Academy of Dance and Art and Hong Kong Professional Teachers' Union to make the event happen today.

MSF Exhibition: "Refugee Camp in the City"

Date: 27 September - 4 October 2006
Time: 11am - 7pm
Venue: Piazza, Kowloon Park, Tsimshatsui
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