Yoba for Life Foundation
Yoba for Life aims to improve health and wealth of people living in resource poor communities through stimulating an inclusive business model based on the local production of probiotic food.
In challenged communities around the world, stimulating economic activity and improving public health are key factors towards more inclusive transformation and establishing a better and prosperous future.
Yoba for Life aims at helping people in resource-poor countries by facilitating the local production of a probiotic yogurt, called Yoba, with proven health benefits through a social business model. The foundation’s activities and impact generation are based on a social business model. Yoba for Life activities, including yoghurt school feeding programs, take mainly place in Uganda, Tanzania and Ethiopia, while pilots are running in other countries (Rwanda, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Ivory Coast, Nepal and Indonesia).
Yoba for Life’s unique asset is a probiotic yoghurt starter culture tailor-made for small and medium scale production in rural areas. Yoba’s expertise lays in the application of this culture in the African context for the production of yoghurt or other fermented food by using a low-tech production protocol with widely proven applicability.
For a period of more than ten years, the foundation has invested in developing local teams of trainers as well as training material that focusses on safe production of Yoba yoghurt and how to effectively run a small-scale yoghurt business, including advice on sourcing inputs, marketing, bookkeeping and financial management.
The concept and impact of Yoba for Life has been featured by the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality. A lively impression of recent work of Yoba for Life can be experienced in this 9 min documentary and 5-min presentation. Over the years, reaseach and development associated with the Yoba for Life initiative led to 25 publications in the scientific literature. For more information see www.yoba4life.org.
Dr Nieke Westerik is Yoba for Life Africa coordinator and is supported by local teams led by Arinda Nelson (Uganda), Costantine Nchangwe (Tanzania) and Binyam Kassa (Ethiopia).
Nieke Westerik is the Africa Coordinator of the Yoba for Life Foundation. She oversees projects in Uganda, Ethiopia and Tanzania. Nieke Westerik completed a PhD-study, which included research on the nutritional and economical interventions of the Yoba for Life Foundation. This interdisciplinary research comprised microbiology, food technology, development economics and clinical trials.