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Students4Kids EN » Solanut – Healthy nutrition in the first 1000 days of life

Solanut – Healthy nutrition in the first 1000 days of life

Short description

Solanut is an integrated solution for hidden hunger which combines simple mobile solar technologies for drying highly nutritious foods, and powering digital mobile computers for record keeping using natural solar power.

The problem we aim to solve

We are targeting micronutrient deficiency specifically iron, folic acid, calcium and iodine for the first a 1000 days of life. The first a 1000 days of life has been described as the unique window of opportunity for target with nutritional interventions as it is the period when foundations for neurodevelopment across lifespan is established. While early nutritional interventions have some potential for restoring neurodevelopment in children and infants, this restoration ability is lost with advancing age.

Our solution

Our innovative idea is to capitalize on the seasons of food abundance to boost food security during seasons of food scarcity by employing solar drying technology. We will produce high quality dried vegetable and fruit pulp with the help of solar powered equipment. We intend to recruit and train 100 pregnant mothers from low income households on the use of the solar technology for food preservation. We will set up demonstration gardens and grow locally available and acceptable vegetable crops in the community. Solar dryer will be used for preservation of the harvested crop during the harvesting season. The preserved vegetables will be used to improve nutrition for the pregnant women and their households during seasons when fresh vegetables are scarce so as to ensure no micro nutrient deficiency occurs during pregnancy. The fruit solar dryer will be used to test the viability of small scale commercial fruit pulp production especially during the seasons of fruit abundance. We will integrate health education and health promotion for pregnant women in the project so as to raise awareness on the significance of healthy nutrition for the growth and development of babies during the first a 1000 days of life. All the information about the project will be captured and stored in solar powered laptops with the help of a digital mobile app.

The innovativeness of our approach

The use of solar powered drying technology for fruits and vegetables preservation is a feasible and efficient method of food preservation that can help fight hidden hunger in developing countries. It is especially an innovative approach because it uses locally available resources to provide a feasible solution to a complex health problem. We will make use of resources naturally existing in the community to fight the problem of hidden hunger.

Technologies and Methods

We will mainly rely on solar powered equipment for food preservation. The equipment will be used to dry fruits and vegetables. We will also use solar powered back packs for mobile computers to store all the project information in a mobile app that provide real time information about the project activities. The information we intend to capture will range from health data from the pregnant women and their babies, demonstration garden out puts and the information on commercial fruit pulp production.

Potential Partners

  • Last mile 4D (3255 Ste. A, Sutton Place, NW, Washington, DC 20016) will supply and train the project team on the use and maintenance of all solar powered equipment to be used in the implementation of this project.
  • Makerere University School of Agricultural Sciences will provide technical support in solar food preservation.
  • Technical assistance will also be sourced from Childslife International (East Africa Chapter).


Voting ends on June 24, 2018, 11:59 pm (CEST).

Solanut- Healthy nutrition in the first 1000 days of life

Team: Paul Kuodi Otiku

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