And the winner is…

An estimated 2 billion people, a good quarter of the world’s population, suffer from micronutrient deficiencies because they lack high-quality food. The situation is particularly critical in sub-Saharan Africa. Breaking the vicious circle of hunger and poverty requires complex and individual solutions.
More than 80 submissions first turned into eight scholarship holders, then three finalists. Since the Students4Kids summit on 11 October 2018 in Berlin, there is one winning team: Jolien Maltzahn and Wieland Buschmann, students at Münster University of Applied Sciences, were able to convince the jury with their project “SimSimBalls in the fight against hidden hunger”.


Together against Hidden Hunger

Inessa Diesing, Managing Director of the Assmann Foundation for Prevention and nutritionist, explains why the Foundation is working together with the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung to combat Hidden Hunger: the consequences of a micronutrient deficiencies are particularly severe during the first 1,000 days of life and can even lead to structural changes in the genes – this creates a vicious circle: health, social and also economic damages of hidden hunger are immense.



Who can participate?

The competition was open to students of all disciplines, who were enrolled at a German, Ugandan or Swiss university at the time of submissions. Individual entries as well as team contributions were welcome.

Why Hidden Hunger?

Almost 40 % of Ugandan children have a vitamin A deficiency and over 30 % are stunted. Many of those affected do not even know about it. We want to make the hidden hunger visible and improve the nutritional situation through innovative ideas.

How can I participate?

The competition is finished. The winners of the competition, Jolien Maltzahn and Wieland Buschmann, will receive a subsidy amount of 10,000 euros for the implementation of their project “SimSimBalls in the fight against Hidden Hunger”.

Hidden Hunger


Hidden hunger describes the chronic deficit of essential micronutrients. The lack of vitamins and minerals occurs independently of caloric intake and is rather related to an unbalanced diet based on starchy foods like maize, rice or cassava. Hidden hunger does not show clear symptoms over a long period of time, thus remaining hidden. Stunted growth is used as a proxy indicator.

On our website you will find detailed background information and latest scientific findings on the subject.


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Become a Project Partner!

You want to support our initiative? Become a sponsor of our winning projects. We are looking for companies that want to participate in the fight against the hidden hunger.

Be part of our initiative and help our students to establish fiber bananas in Zambia or to build up insect farms in Côte d’Ivoire.

Support now!

“If we succeed in confronting hidden hunger in its regionally specific manifestation through intelligent, preventive solution approaches, we could hopefully save human lives and sustainably improve development opportunities.”


Prof. em. Dr. med. Gerd Assmann, FRCP
Chairman of the Board of Assmann-Stiftung für Prävention

See also: Interview with Prof. Assmann


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