On April 25, 2015 a 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit Nepal, which has reportedly killed more than 7,500 people and injured more than 14,500. Hundreds of thousands of others were left homeless when entire villages were flattened, and hundreds more are still considered missing. In addition, aftershocks and a continued risk of landslides may cause even more devastation.
After seeing the devastation in Nepal, the natural supplement industry has offered its support in a number of ways. Washington-based R·U·Ved, Inc. is supporting relief efforts by matching funds up to $1,000; while ZYM (Chicago, IL) is donating both proceeds and electrolyte drink tabs to the victims. Through May 31, 2015, ZYM will donate 20 percent of purchases made from the goZYM.com website to the Nepal Relief Fund. To take part in the contribution, make a purchase of any ZYM tubes.
Vitamin Angels (Santa Barbara, CA) is responding to recent requests from partner NGOs in Nepal following the earthquake on Saturday, April 25th. Partners, including Global Nutrition Empowerment and Project for a Village, have expressed the need for additional micronutrient supplement grants to expand their reach to affected communities. While not a disaster relief agency, Vitamin Angels is responding to the emergency by expediting and increasing the number of vitamins being sent to the country. After the immediate crisis has been addressed, Vitamin Angels will work to rebuild nutritional security in Nepal by partnering with local organizations focused on long-term strategies for fighting undernutrition.
“The importance of proper nutrition in the aftermath of disasters is vital to maintaining good health when those already at risk of undernutrition are faced with even greater challenges in obtaining food and clean water, as well as increased exposure to illness,” said Howard Schiffer, president and founder of Vitamin Angels. Schiffer founded Vitamin Angels in the wake of the 1994 Northridge earthquake in California.
NOW Foods (Bloomingdale, IL) is also joining in on the relief effort. According to NOW Board Member Sharon Wong, the company just set up an employee match for Nepal via World Relief’s partnering NGO Integral Alliance and local churches in the area. “They are able to help with shelter, food, water, medical attention and long term needs,” she said. “We also have an employee match with Vitamin Angels to increase the amount of vitamins for the area to help support nutritional needs. Whatever our employees want to donate will come directly from their paychecks and NOW will match the amount that they donate.”
New York-based NBTY, Inc. will be donating $500,000 worth of Nature’s Bounty vitamins and supplements, as well as nutrition bars from Balance Bar. The donation was made through the Feed The Children organization. NBTY has also made a monetary contribution to aid in the relief efforts.
“As a global leader in the wellness industry, we at NBTY recognize our compelling corporate responsibility to do whatever we can to help alleviate some of the suffering being experienced by the people impacted by this horrific event,” said Andrea Staub, vice president of communications and corporate social responsibility at NBTY. “We wish the people of Nepal solace and strength as they begin the enormous task of rebuilding their lives and their country.”