Bookstore helps hungry through sales

Published 10:14 pm Tuesday, December 13, 2011

MARION — You’ve seen the paid late-night advertisements of children from Third World countries with bulging bellies, stick-thin arms or a face full of tears due to severe malnutrition.  One Marion man plans to make a difference and help in the fight against world hunger.

Charles Flaherty, owner of As Time Goes By Bookstore and coffee shop, will offer a tasting of Plumpy’Nut Thursday at 418 Washington St. in Marion, with proceeds going toward starving children in African countries and Haiti. An $11 donation is asked to take part in the event and the tasting.

Created in 1996 by International Relief and Development and Nutriset and recommended by the World Health Organization to prevent acute malnutrition, Plumpy’Nut consists of a peanut-based paste with sugar, vegetable fat, skim milk powder, vitamins and minerals, and is made by the nonprofit organization Edesia Global Nutrition Solutions in Rhode Island and France.

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Flaherty said he wanted to be a part of the cause to help the hungry.

“It was developed by nutritionists (and) it’s almost like a candy bar … and a baby has 95 percent survival rate,” Flaherty said. “These companies make Plumy’Nut and sell it to UNICEF or Doctors Without Borders. The money I’m raising will go to Edesia. It’s 33 cents per tube and one tube will feed a kid for a day; Plumpy’Nut literally saves a starving baby’s life. You’re saving a child for $11.”

Flaherty said he thought this was something he could do, especially during the holiday season.

“I wanted to do this — I thought it was a great product (and) I like being socially conscious,” Flaherty said. “It’s good will. I like to do things to help other people … this is the time of year to do it. This is something people can spend a little bit of money on and help someone else. Every little bit helps.”

Flaherty said interested individuals may write checks out to Edesia.

Proceeds will be sent to the headquarters in Rhode Island and products will be shipped out from there to doctors and their staff around the world. For more information call 683-6757.

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