IDD Project (1993-2005)
(Elimination of Iodine Deficiency Disorders)
Although unfamiliar in Japan, Iodine deficiency disorders (IDD) afflict many children in the world, by causing mental and developmental disabilities. A spoonful of iodine is all you need for the life time, but you need to take a bit of them every day. In 1993, at the International Convention in Nice, Kiwanis International announced to make it the first Global Service Project to eradicate this disease. At the International Convention in New Orleans the coming year, it made a pledge to raise US$ 7,500 million for the cause. In particular, Kiwanis International joined forces with UNICEF, with Kiwanis raising funds and UNICEF working in fields, to establish 1,000 factories to add iodine to table salts, so as to provide iodine permanently.
Actor Roger Moore of 007 series was appointed as the honorary chairman of this project, and embarked on an active fundraising. Mr. Moore visited Japan in April 2001, appealing the importance of eradication of IDD.
The total fund raised by Kiwanis International exceeded its original target, and reached to around US$ 8,700 million. The Japan District was 0.05% in membership, but exceeded 1% in fundraising, amounting to US$ 117 million. As a result, more than 70% of the children in need were saved by iodized salts. This is one of the most successful results produced by UNICEF.