Sep 27, 2021

Lucky.

CHAT CORP helping a woman put on a mask
CHAT CORP helping a woman put on a mask

“Last August has to be the most memorable month in my life. Not that something good happened, but because it was the most scared I have ever been.” CHAT CORP partner Agnes shared. “On a typical Wednesday morning, I had gone to the health facility, as usual, to follow up on some referrals I had done the previous week in the community. I first found the nurse asleep on her desk! I wondered what was wrong. I touched her hand to wake her up, but to say that it was burning up is an understatement. She was wheezing, and since she is asthmatic, I thought she was having an attack. I went to the outpatient department to seek help only to find the clinical officer on duty shivering and complaining that it was too cold. It was a sweltering day to be saying it’s cold, so I decided to take his temperature and alas, it was high too! 

I did not think it might be severe and just called another nurse to help with the two. Though he kept saying he was feeling lethargic, he managed their symptoms and let them rest for some time. Barely had three hours passed and the observation room was almost full of facility workers. They presented the same symptoms of high fevers, body aches and shortness of breath. Those remaining thought it might be safe to take C-19 samples for testing for those in the observation room. Taking measures to wear protective gear and closing the facility to do the test - just in case they turned out positive. All the people who had contacted them were held back and asked to quarantine until they had the results.

When the results came back, they were all positive. I was scared because I had interacted with them and had been to their spaces, so I might have contacted it, just that it was too early to tell. Everyone provided a sample for testing. They put the positive ones in isolation; as they recovered, the rest sat in quarantine, waiting out their fate. 

In the end, I was among the lucky ones. Not being present in the facility for some days doing a door to door sensitisation saved me. I was scared and worried for those that got it. Though they managed to recover after some time, they struggled with the whole process. This experience gave me even more reason to encourage the community members to get vaccinated. Were it not for the vaccine I had, maybe it would have been worse for me!”

 

CHAT reached a total of 30,128 people with integrated family planning & COVID 19 behaviour change communication (bcc).

 CORPs continue to distribute face masks, soap, hand sanitisers, provided 5 litre & 20-litre containers towards constructing simple hand-washing stations for C-19 prevention.

“I believe that ethically everyone should take the vaccine. It is an ethical choice because you are not only gambling with your health, with your life, but you are also gambling with the lives of others.”

Pope Francis

Sanitizing clinic tent before service provision.
Sanitizing clinic tent before service provision.
Observing social distance during health education.
Observing social distance during health education.
Giving PPEs/screening fo C19 in the community
Giving PPEs/screening fo C19 in the community
Aug 13, 2021

Securing a Better Life

CHAT CORP sensitizing a group of women after work
CHAT CORP sensitizing a group of women after work

* Not their real names

Mutunga*, a father of two was close to leaving Katse because of the pressure from the family to have more children. He is a farmer and with the continuous dry spell in Katse, he had little to no harvest. He and his wife Nduku* had agreed to have a small family after being sensitized on the importance of family planning and how it could help them organize their finances, they agreed to use the five-year implant. It had only been two years and his parents kept asking if his wife had suddenly become barren.

Mutunga did not want to explain to anyone why he was not having more children but at the same time, he felt pity for his wife who was being ridiculed for not having more children. He knew that the backward-mindedness of his old folks would not let them rest till they had more children so he decided to leave the village. He shared this with his friend who asked him why not have Mbuli- CHAT’s CORP - to go talk to his parents. Mutunga was skeptical though he agreed to try it as the last resort before he moved.

He and Mbuli planned a day and went to his parents’ home. At first, they were surprised why their son was going to visit them with Mbuli. They knew her from the time she taught them about C-19 prevention. They decided to listen to what she had to say this time around. Mbuli explained to them how Mutunga and his siblings did not get the best kind of education and upbringing because they were too many and did not have a great source of income. That is why Mutunga had decided to have a small family that he and his wife could easily manage.

His parents agreed that having and raising 10 children with their little wealth, was a struggle. They now understood why their son was reluctant to have more children. They decided to support his idea and encouraged Mbuli to visit Mutungas’ brothers to advise them so that they too would plan their families and lives sensibly.  

Thanks to GG support, in the past three months, CHAT was able to reach a total of 12,233 individuals with behaviour change communication (bcc) information with 4,511 family planning clients receiving different contraception methods, of which 3,783 chose the long-term methods - 3/5-years protection against unwanted pregnancies.

Every second, every day, every year, we fail to address demand for reproductive health and family planning services. Lives are lost, and girls’ opportunities to thrive and contribute to their country’s development shrink. These are real people.” Jenny Shipley

FP and PHE sensitization in the local market
FP and PHE sensitization in the local market
A child receiving treatment from CHAT Nurse
A child receiving treatment from CHAT Nurse
Refferal by CORP to a dispensary to acces services
Refferal by CORP to a dispensary to acces services
Aug 12, 2021

Turn Around

Treatment during a motor mobile
Treatment during a motor mobile

*Their names have been changed

As the motor mobile team packed the vehicle at Longopito in June 2021, they kept wondering where Naitemwa* was. For about three years, she has always helped them set up camp and organize the clinic before people start arriving. It was not always like that with her, in fact, she always discouraged community members from visiting the clinic whenever they went to the village to provide services. She was totally against FP. Being the first wife to her husband she always said that all her other co-wives were required to have as many children like her or even more if possible. She did not expect them to be ‘lazy’. Though she had always known the husband would marry more wives, she was not ready for it thus decided to punish them and insight him to ensure they have many children.

The more the family grew the more suffering they went through. They could not provide for all the children let alone the whole family. They started sleeping hungry on most nights of the week and if they had any food, they never ate to their satisfaction. Naitemwa still never related the large family size to their suffering. She kept blaming the drought and bad times.

One day as CHAT’s CORP partner, Julius, was providing health education to a group of women he had mobilized near the motor mobile, someone gave him a cup of tea, another one offered to host him for lunch and Naitemwa was in disbelief! How could the other women afford to host someone where she knew they would be sleeping hungry that night? As she started to lament, Julius asked her how big was her family and she said 19, inclusive of her husband. She then went on to say that they all did not work and depended on their flock which was dwindling slowly and soon they would have nothing.

Julius explained to her that if she had a smaller family and had a small income-generating activity, it would be easier for them to manage their family. He told her that at the moment they should not increase their family size – rather, stabilize. From this understanding, Naitemu discussed with her husband and with all her co-wives; they each agreed and chose to receive the 5-year family planning implant contraception protection method. On top of that, they decided to sell two goats and start a business selling groceries in the surrounding markets.

From this, they now have a little food for all of them which was their greatest need. They have taken all their children to school. She always tells other women that were it not for Julius and CHAT’s Nurse, maybe they would have died of hunger. As of June 2021, she had helped 12 women change their minds and access services at CHAT’s motor mobile clinic.

Thanks to GG support in the past three months, CHAT was able to reach a total of 12,233 individuals with behavior change communication (bcc) information with 4,511 family planning clients receiving different contraception methods, of which 3,783 chose the long-term methods- 3/5-years protection against unwanted pregnancies.

"Reproductive health, sexual health, family planning, and autonomy and equality for women are not the fruits of development; they are not even the fertilizer—they are the tree itself." - Dr. Nafis Sadik

Sensitization by CORP on Family Planning & PHE
Sensitization by CORP on Family Planning & PHE
CHAT going to Nothern Kenya to give health service
CHAT going to Nothern Kenya to give health service
Degraded enviroment due to overuse of resourses
Degraded enviroment due to overuse of resourses
 
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