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Currently, HKI works in 22 countries around the world in Africa, Asia and the United States.Global headquarters are located in New York City, and programs are also developed and administered through regional offices, currently located in Senegal and Phnom Penh, as well as through 19 country offices and an additional development office in Paris.HKI has country offices in Burkina Faso, Bangladesh, Cameroon, Cambodia, Côte d’Ivoire, China, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea, Indonesia, Mali, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Philippines, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Vietnam, and Zimbabwe.Helen Keller International has received the 2014 BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in the Development Cooperation category for agricultural programs that help families and villages to raise their own nutritious foods.“Hunger and low dietary diversity reduce cognitive function, physical capacity, resistance to disease and quality of life and lifetime earnings.Heller Keller International champions Homestead Food Production, an innovative, interdisciplinary program that promotes improved agricultural and nutritional practices in a synergistic fashion.This approach is mostly applied to communities that have difficult access to labor and food markets,” in the words of the jury’s citation.Helen Keller International (HKI) combats the causes and consequences of blindness and malnutrition by establishing programs based on evidence and research in vision, health and nutrition. Kessler, the organization’s mission is to save the sight and lives of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged. Kessler, also known as the "Champagne King," was a passenger on the RMS Lusitania in 1915 when it was torpedoed by a German U-boat.
The cause he chose was assisting Allied soldiers blinded in the service.
He later befriended Helen Keller and helped found the organization that became Helen Keller International.
HKI’s two major areas of expertise are Eye Health and Nutrition.
Its Eye Health programs address the major causes of blindness in the world, including cataract, trachoma and onchocerciasis, and treating refractive error.
Its nutrition programs include vitamin A, iron/folate, and multi-micronutrient supplementation, fortification of commonly used foods, dietary diversification, community- and school-gardening as well as school health activities, the promotion of breastfeeding and complementary feeding, and nutritional surveillance to provide critical data to governments and other development partners.