Education  Kenya Project #21154

Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum

by Macheo US
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum
Feed 30 malnourished young children in Kenyan slum

At Macheo US we are concerned with the health and well-being of malnourished children under 5 in Kenya. Many in the Thika area are suffering from malnutrition and wasting, thus leaving these children at higher risk of malnutrition related ailments. For children who survive, wasting adversely affects children’s body growth, and brain development, with the effects being lifelong. Under-nutrition makes them more susceptible to infection. At Macheo we not only provide nutritional supplimentation as long as needed, we also create opportunities for the family to become financially self-sustaining, thus avoiding the pitfalls of day labor employment.

With your help we have supported many children like Dylan and his grandmother Mwania. Together we can create a fairer future for more little ones.

Thank You!

Anne Thompson

From the field....submitted by Hassan Ibrahim, Macheo, Kenya


Improving Health and Economic Well-being for Abandoned Infant and Grandmother in Rural Kenya with Macheo


Dylan is the second child in a family of two. He lives with his grandmother in Mwania Mbogo, Kakuzi Area. His mother abandoned him when he was just 21 days old, leaving his grandmother to raise him on her own. Due to the grandmother's lack of stable income, she could only afford to feed Dylan porridge made from maize flour, which led to constipation. At 4 months old, Dylan was underweight, weak, and had difficulty breathing. He was diagnosed with severe bronchitis pneumonia, low calcium levels, and low blood levels and was given medication and breast milk substitute with the support of Macheo. Despite initial improvement, Dylan's health deteriorated and he was diagnosed with tuberculosis and anemia. He was admitted to the hospital for close monitoring and discharged with follow-up care.


Currently, Dylan is improving, gaining weight, taking medication and following doctor's appointments and tuberculosis clinics. He has been introduced to complementary feeding and supplements to boost his health. Macheo also provided nutritional counseling to the grandmother to help her prepare nutritious food for her grandchildren. Additionally, Macheo provided an economic boost to the family by giving the grandmother a seed capital for goats and chickens which will be a long-term source of income for the family. This not only provides for their financial needs but also help them to sustain themselves on the long run. With the support of Macheo, Dylan's health has improved and he has a better chance at a healthy future.

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Our success Story

At one year and three months old, Josh (not real name) was malnourished, his short life had been full of incredible sadness and survival, not exactly what a little baby should be going through. Born with a cleft lip and palate, Josh had a health care journey ahead of him that would need more than one medical intervention to repair his cleft lip and malnourished condition. His mother Tabitha, worked as a manual laborer and had to take on the earning responsibility in the household since her husband was a drunkard and did not care about them. For Tabitha’s family every day was a struggle with work in short supply, causing a significant impact on her ability to maintain food supplies. “I simply could not afford to provide basic needs, especially the nutritious food my young children needed for good health. Instead, my eight children struggled to survive on a diet of little more than cereal porridges, millet, maize, or rice, a diet that lacked many essential nutrients,” says Tabitha.

When Macheo's social worker identified Josh, he was thin, wasted with pale eyes and palms. This was a troubling symptom of what would become a much more complex condition; malnutrition. Josh’s weight was also fluctuating, he got sick so often because his body did not have the same ability to fight off infection as a well-nourished child’s body would. What’s more, as is common with children dealing with malnutrition, Josh had little appetite. In addition, he couldn’t eat well because of the cleft lip and palate which only aggravated his condition and the complications he was experiencing. Through Macheo, Josh was enrolled in the nutrition program which provided him the medication and dietary treatment he needed including an intensive follow-up to help regain developmental milestones. With the help of Macheo, Tabitha is also learning how to provide her children with a more balanced and complete diet, even with minimal money she earns. After that, Macheo took another step ahead to help repair the cleft lip and palate. Josh would require two surgeries; lip adhesion operation to close the clefts in Josh’s lip and a final surgery to bring everything beautifully together. It cost $100 US dollars for Josh to undergo the first procedure which was successfully carried out.

Despite the priceless happiness from Josh’s mother when she was told that her child had successfully begun his health care journey, there were things she had to do differently. She tried very hard to treat Josh as though there was nothing different about him. “Josh is growing up to be well adjusted. ’Fearless’ is one word we always use to describe him these days since he received the support from Macheo. He is willing to do anything and has the spunk to try to do it,” says Tabitha. “At first I was devastated and scared. I was concerned about what Josh would look like for the rest of his life. I wanted to make sure that his face would appear symmetrical but I didn’t earn enough to make this happen. For the cleft lip repair, it took one week for him to recover, and we had to get used to not seeing a hole in Josh’s lip. My hope is that he recovers from the cleft palate repair in the next surgery within two days, then he can get back to eating regular baby food.”

Tabitha was moved by the compassion and generosity of everyone who has played a role in Josh’s care. She remains grateful to Macheo who helped Josh turn into a happy, confident and charming boy he is growing up to be. He is now healthy, part of a family that absolutely adores him, and has a future that has been re-written and is filled with hope. Macheo feels compelled to make sure that Josh undergoes a second surgery which according to the doctors is a costly procedure that the family can not afford to raise. Tabitha looks forward to her son Josh having a future that has been re-written and is filled with hope towards fully recovery of Josh’s condition. Macheo is currently facilitating enrollment of Josh into the National Hospital Insurance Fund, a scheme that would offer him free treatment for the surgery. Unfortunately, Josh has never acquired a birth certificate making it impossible to kick start the process.

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Malnutrition prevents children from reaching their full physical and mental potential. Health and physical consequences of prolonged states of malnourishment among children cause a delay in physical growth and motor development, lower intellectual quotient, more significant behavioral problems and deficient social skills, and susceptibility to contracting diseases. Furthermore, child malnutrition is associated with under-five mortality in Sub-Saharan African countries.

At Macheo, we believe that children are the future of any nation and if nations are to develop, they must take more care of their children. A child's health during the first five years of life is largely set by events occurring during prenatal and post-natal periods. We know malnutrition is one of the most health and welfare problems among infants and children in Kenya. It is an immediate result of both inadequate food intake and illness. Inadequate food intake is a consequence of insufficient food availability at the household level, improper feeding practices, or both Improper feeding practices include both in quality and quantity of food offered to young children as well as the timing of their introduction. To address this issue, our intervention gives parents knowledge on how to prepare a balanced meal and support parents who struggle to feed their children with startup seed capital to start businesses so they can start providing food for their children.  

We also support parents in understanding health issues like poor sanitation and how it puts young children at increased risk of illnesses particularly diarrheal and Cholera which adversely affect their nutritional status. Both inadequate food intake and poor environmental sanitation reflect underlying social and economic conditions.

Our Success

With your support, Macheo’s nutrition team organized with the previous parents who had been under the intervention and had been trained and were knowledgeable about nutrition, to organize seminar events that were focused on nutrition. The events included growth monitoring and an education session on child nutrition. Macheo led the session and the cost of buying fruits and vegetables that participants could sample. This education session emphasized that good feeding practices for infants and young children are essential to prevent all forms of malnutrition. Parents were also taught how to grow their meals in gunny sacks (kitchen gardens) so that they could transform eating habits and give them good, long-lasting background knowledge about the way food is produced, save money, and have available vegetables. 

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Clare and her babies
Clare and her babies

Our Success

Alan, Joy and Sylvia* (not their real names) are triplets and secondborns. They live with both their parents in the slum area.Their father is a casual labourer and their mother was operating a small business before she delivered them and had to stop to take care of her children.

“As I attended my usual antenatal clinics, my doctor advised me to get a scan to check the progress of my unborn baby. The results were surprising to me and my whole family. I would be having triplets.” Clare, their mother, explained.

“The shocking news made me develop high blood pressure that had me admitted to the hospital for close monitoring. My children were thus born prematurely and weighed less than 2kgs” she continued. "My husband and I could barely afford to buy food, let alone take care of three babies. All our savings had gone towards my medical bills”

When we met Clare, her triplets were restless, crying and very irritable. Clare was alone as she had no one to help her take care of her triplets. She was feeling very overwhelmed and out of breath. She could see that her children were unhealthy and she was scared.

Through assessment and discussions with Clare, It was noted that her children were not breastfeeding enough since she would only breastfeed them on one breast. Her other breast had sores and she was instructed by her doctor not to breastfeed. Clare felt desperate!

We immediately supported her with formula milk to give to her babies, who were malnourished.

Through teamwork and the use of different interventions such as emergency family support (cash transfer) and her strong will, Clare was able to prioritize her family's needs and also seek medical treatment for her breast.

Clare received mental health support as well as nutrition education and diet counselling, which included training on a properly balanced diet, foods that facilitate milk production and also on exclusive breastfeeding.

Continuous monitoring and follow up on Clare and her triplets were done.

Today Clare’s children are doing well. They are stable, gaining weight and sitting down without support. Clare is a proud mother. She is happy and healthy. She is happy to watch her children grow.

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The first one thousand days is a very important stage for fighting chronic malnutrition.  During this window much of a child’s development occurs (the development of the brain and major organ systems). Subsequently this window of development is closed, and not much can be done to reverse the results to growth and development that has occurred. Children at this stage who are chronically malnourished hit developmental milestones far behind their non-stunted peers, score lower on verbal reasoning and are more prone to infectious disease.  This window during infancy, this infamous “thousand days”, is very small.  So small and so fragile, in fact, that many members of the global health community consider it the do or break period for a child.  

Because of your continued support, children like Valerie are spared these serious stunted developmental results. MacheoUS is very grateful for your kind consideration to our cause.

With regards, 

Anne Thompson and the Macheo team


From the Field...

How your support transformed Valarie's life.
Valerie* is the last born in a family of 3 children. Her father is a casual labourer that does odd jobs to feed his family while her mother has a small embroidery business. We met Valarie during the Covid 19 pandemic period when casual jobs were inaccessible and her mother's business had vastly deteriorated. During the assessment, Valerie was 18 months old weighing 39 pounds her height was 2' 6" with moderate acute malnutrition.Valerie's parents would barely afford food for their household. Her mother, June*, had no knowledge of nutrition and was discouraged to see her daughter unhealthy.
At first sight, Valerie was very irritable and would cry a lot. She had no appetite and would eat little to no food. She was taken to the hospital where she was diagnosed with malnutrition. Her parents first received a cash transfer from Macheo that enabled them to purchase all the dietary supplements required, as well as food for their household. June also received nutrition education to help her better care for Valerie and her siblings. She ensured that Valarie started eating healthy nutritious food as well as taking her dietary supplements. Valarie began to recover as continuous follow-ups and home visits were done.
Valerie has fully recovered and is feeding well. She loves to play with her siblings and enjoys walking around her compound with her neighbouring friends. Through the cash transfer, June was able to restore the embroidery business that is helping her to care for her family’s needs. Her husband also helps out with family expenses as he is no longer in lack of casual jobs. They are grateful for the support they received through Macheo especially seeing their daughter Valerie happy and healthy. Valerie has hope for a better future because of your support. 


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Organization Information

Macheo US

Location: Okemos, MI - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Anne Thompson
Okemos , MI United States
$26,559 raised of $32,000 goal
341 donations
$5,441 to go
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Pay Bill: 891300
Account: GG21154

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