Sprinkles Global Health Initiative
Children & Youth
Health & Well-being
Human Rights & Equality
Science & Technology
Empowering moms for healthier families
Dr. Stanley Zlotkin is mobilizing grassroots networks of mothers to provide essential health education and distribution lines for “Sprinkles,” a low-cost nutrition innovation.
Micronutrients for maximum impact
It’s easy to discount the importance of minerals like zinc and iron, but it’s estimated that as many as 750 million children in developing countries suffer from micronutrient malnutrition. Iron deficiency in particular affects more than a billion people.
These deficiencies can impede cognitive and physical development, health, learning and productivity later in life. While fortified foods, like infant cereal, have helped to decrease deficiencies in industrialized countries, these products are often expensive or conflict with traditional infant feeding practices.
Enter Dr. Stanley Zlotkin.
Working out of Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), Stanley and his research team developed Sprinkles, small sachets containing micronutrient powders that parents or caregivers can add to foods prepared at home to fortify them and minimize deficiencies.
Research in multiple countries has proven that these supplements have the potential to improve the health of tens of millions of children around the world at very little cost. But the beauty of Stanley’s Sprinkles isn’t simply in the product, it’s in the distribution.
To get these essential micronutrients into communities, Stanley develops clusters of partnerships with private, public, local and international institutions — and lots of moms. He works closely with grassroots women’s groups, educating them about home fortification, and in doing so, puts the power in the hands of communities and the moms of undernourished kids to support children’s health.
Much like the importance of micronutrients, the scope of Stanley’s work is easy to underestimate. By the end of 2005, over 400,000 children had received Sprinkles, and he regularly consults with governments and UN agencies on issues related to global child health and nutrition.
In 2012, Stanley was named as the inaugural Chief of the SickKids Centre for Global Child Health. The centre is focused on collaborating in ground-breaking research, building capacity through education, actively communicating results through advocacy, and promoting improved child health through knowledge and networks. Stanley is currently developing delivery science to enhance the implementation of public health programs and products.