Education  India Project #23287

1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child

by RED International
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child
1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child

RED International will cease operations from the end of 2017. However, our sister organisation Dalit Freedom Network (DFN) in the USA are in now process of joining GlobalGiving. You can support them in that process here  https://goto.gg/30656

DFN also support the work of our partner in India, OMIF. All RED International's India connected projects with GlobalGiving are transferring over to DFN.

For more information regarding RED International's closure please see this link - Important Announcement

The 1000 days - Education & Support for Mother & Child project is moving over to DFN and the RED International page will close. We are very grateful for all the support you have given to this project over the last couple of years.

To continue to support the 1000 days - Education & Support for Mother and Child project please follow the link below.

https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/education-and-support-for-mother-and-child

Thank you so much for helping to support this important work providing healthcare and support to mothers and children in India Please do continue to follow their progress through the new link to the project.

You can see all of Dalit Freedom Network’s Projects with GlobalGiving here

https://www.globalgiving.org/donate/10060/dalit-freedom-network/

RED International owes the greatest debt of gratitude to all those individuals and organisations who have supported projects over the last 12 years through donations and sponsored events. The funds which have been given to support many different projects have made a lasting impact, transforming lives and communities among the poor and marginalised. RED International and our partners want to thank all those who have joined with us to make this possible.

Thank you for your faithful support of this project through RED International. Please continue to support the project through the new Dalit Freedom Network page and share this with your friends and networks and encourage them to give before the end of 2017. All donations made on #GivingTuesday28th November 2017 will be match funded proportionally. Depending on the amount the project receives on that day. it will receive a proportion of a $75,000 matching fund relative to the total given to all projects on that day.

https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/education-and-support-for-mother-and-child

Short URL Link https://goto.gg/30530

Please also consider helping DFN to secure a place with GlobalGiving by supporting their Accelerator Project  from Tuesday 28th November 2017 here:- https://goto.gg/30656

DFN need to raise $5000 for the WaterWheel Project from 40 unique donors by the 31st December 2017  

Thank you again for your partnership and support.

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Antenatal visual aids are a key resource
Antenatal visual aids are a key resource

Thanks to your support RED International was able to fund the printing of flash cards on important aspects of antenatal care. Since then, the Community Health Workers working in Good Shepherd Schools in India have found that village women have found it much easier to share concerns and questions related to pregnancy. Rehka* and Rani* were very encouraged in the village meeting in Gujarat when the women were eager to learn and pledged to follow the advice that the health workers were giving them.

Rani was especially encouraged as she remembered a woman she had encouraged recently who was about five months pregnant. Rani met Sujathe* during a routine visit to Sujathe’s village. She was immediately stuck by how thin and pale she seemed and was shocked to learn that she was pregnant. Rani asked if she had attended the Primary Health Centre and when Sujathe was about to reply her mother in law appeared from inside the thatched house and told Rani that there was no need for Sujathe to attend the clinic, she had work to do at home and no one free to take her. Rani spent some time explained the importance of Sujathe receiving antenatal care. She explained that she needed immunisations and iron and folic acid tablets to correct her anaemia. Sujathe’s mother in law was adamant that antenatal care was not necessary but Rani was determined to work with the family and to help them understand the importance of antenatal care. She visited regularly and after several visits Sujathe’s mother in law relented and agreed to allow Sujathe to attend for antenatal care. She was given iron and folic acid tablets, as well as tetanus injections and went on to deliver a healthy baby. Without the intervention of the Community Health Worker Sujathe’s baby could have been low weight and vulnerable to many problems during delivery and immediately after birth.

Sujathe’s story is an all too common scenario that our health workers encounter all over India. Persuading pregnant women, or their families, of the importance of antenatal care occupies much of their time when visiting villages. Having resources to support education of groups of village women of all ages is an important part of their work in helping village communities understand the importance of ante-natal care.

Thank you for your part in helping women and children to thrive rather than survive the key stages of pregnancy and infancy in India. Who can you share this story with so that more families can be helped?

*names changed

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Training for pregnant women at the refugee camp
Training for pregnant women at the refugee camp

RED International has been excited by a new initiative by their partner, Operation Mercy (OPM), in helping the Syrian Refugees in Domiz 2 Camp, Northern Iraq.

Alongside the hygiene distribution project, OPM has also been working with pregnant women and infants. The World Health Organization recommends that “infants should be exclusively breastfed for the first six months of life to achieve optimal growth, development and health. Thereafter, to meet their evolving nutritional requirements, infants should receive nutritionally adequate and safe complementary foods while breastfeeding continues for up to two years of age or beyond.”

According to Nurture Project International, an international NGO specializing in care for refugee mothers and babies, “Approximately a fifth of all deaths among children under 5 years in the developing world could be prevented through safe infant feeding practices. Infants fewer than six months old who are not breastfed in non-emergency situations are already more than 14 times more likely to die from all causes than are exclusively breastfed children. These risks are amplified in emergency situations and mortality rates are often greatly elevated.”

Operation Mercy, has been operating a pregnancy and lactation support project in Domiz I refugee camp since September 2016 with the following goals:

1) To increase support systems for refugee women who are pregnant and/or lactating in the refugee camps

2) To provide training to key local staff members of the Dohuk Department of Health that provide direct care to women in the camps, in order to address commonly-identified barriers to breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding does more than just support physical health for mother and baby; it is a holistic lifeline in times of crisis, laying down foundations of attachment and emotional resilience that stretch years into the future. In the words of one mother in Domiz 1 who was supported by our project, “I cried the last two nights when I thought my baby didn’t want my milk… but now, when I put her skin-to-skin and look into her eyes, I just feel so happy.”

The Pregnancy and Lactation Support project has had a rare opportunity to address all five areas of Operation Mercy’s core competencies simultaneously: empowering women, improving health, caring for children at risk, equipping the next generation, and responding to crisis. OPM has been honoured to play a role in this vital work. All these qualities fit with RED International’s goals and our vision to support women and children through the 1000 days initiative. If you would like to know more about the relief work in Northern Iraq follow the link below.

Thank you for helping to bring health and hygiene to so many families in Northern Iraq through RED International and its partner. Lives are transformed thanks to your support.

Links:

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3 hours boat ride from healthcare is a challenge
3 hours boat ride from healthcare is a challenge

Lake Tanganyika medical team are one of the projects that RED International supports as part of the 1000 day initiative to care for mother and child as well as it's wider impact on the health of remote communities providing much needed healthcare and HIV services to people living along its shores.

Their latest village visit was to Kapembwa, a very remote village which is a 3 hour boat journey away from Mpulungu and the nearest clinic, with no running water, electricity or even phone signal. It has also been one of the most difficult villages to break the cycle of witchcraft, with many suspicious of the team’s efforts to help. They visited three times in the past 10 months, each time providing health education, HIV testing and a health clinic, and they have seen more people attending with each visit. On this most recent trip they saw close to 500 patients across the health clinic, antenatal care, HIV testing and a dentist. The need for both preventative and primary healthcare in this village was very evident – almost 20% of the patients seen had malaria, and other sicknesses such as respiratory infections and diarrhoea were very prevalent. 48 patients were tested for HIV, with 6 new cases being found. One of these was a lady called Bertha*.

Bertha* is 21 years old, the third wife of her husband, and she was pregnant with her third child. Due to various reasons including length of journey, transport costs, superstitions and the need to keep earning money, women like Bertha often don’t make it to the hospital for antenatal appointments (where testing for HIV is routine). In fact many never go, and end up giving birth either in the village or on the boat on the way to the hospital. If they do go, it’s normally only if something goes wrong and often it is already too late. So Bertha was 4 months pregnant and hadn’t yet seen a doctor.

When the medical team came to her village, she decided to come for an antenatal appointment. As part of the check-up, she was tested for HIV and was confirmed positive. When she found out she was shocked. They called her husband to come so that they could have counselling together but he refused to come. She was extremely upset and was crying a lot. But the team sat down with her and explained what the diagnosis did and didn’t mean, giving her lots of stories of people living normal, successful lives with HIV. She was given antiretroviral treatment (ART) straight away. The service the team is providing is vital for people like Bertha, both for her health and the health of her child. Now that she knows her status, she can access ART which will greatly reduce the chance of mother-child transmission. In addition, as the community becomes more educated about HIV through the teaching our team provides, her friends in the village will also be able to support her well, and when the baby is born they can make sure he/she is also tested for HIV so that they can take the best care possible.

RED International and the medical team thank you for your continued support and interest in the work the team is doing at Lake Tanganyika. It really is saving lives.

*Name changed

The HIV status of those photographed is unknown
A family receiving basic but vital healthcare
A family receiving basic but vital healthcare

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Women receiving Birth Life Saving Skills training
Women receiving Birth Life Saving Skills training

Thank you so much for your support of the 1000 days project. Funds raised through this initiative are sent to RED International's partners to support and provide resources for Community Health Workers in India, Health & HIV Services around Lake Tanganyika and the BLiSS Project in Afghanistan. This report includes stories from BLiSS (Birth Life Saving Skills) in Afghanistan and Antenatal and Postnatal care in India.

BLiSS (Birth Life Saving Skills) in Afghanistan.

Shaima and Mozahira were participants of Freshta’s BLiSS training group.  One day when I went to teach, Mozahira was not present at the group.  When I asked them why, Shaima said she had delivered her baby last night. 

“Her husband called me to help her.  When I arrived there she was in labour.  At first I was concerned but then I remembered what we had learned in the BLiSS lessons about how we can help a woman during delivery. The first thing I did was to tell her husband to bring the taxi for going to the doctor (the family had prepared money for this). I told Mozahira: ’don’t worry, until the car comes, I will help you’.

I prepared all the things needed for delivery and then I washed my hands and put on the gloves.  Suddenly I could see the head of the baby so I told her push, and then the baby was born! I dried the baby then rubbed him and cleaned his mouth, nose and eyes.  Then I cut the cord.   In order to get the placenta out I told her to pass urine and start the baby breastfeeding. 

After a while the placenta came out.  I checked placenta to make sure it was complete.  Then I cleaned up the things contaminated with blood and fluids and disposed of them.  I told her ’now you are not at a high risk.’   I said to her: ’Do you remember the teachers telling us that after delivery you should massage the womb for 24 hours and also don’t wash your baby for 24 hours? Tomorrow you should go to the clinic for vaccination and a check-up.’

Thanks to the BLiSS team that they teach us how to help a woman during delivery.”

RED International’s partner, Operation Mercy, have been able to restart the BLiSS project in the Wakhan region of Afghanistan. Having suitably trained facilitators is one challenge. Being able to get them to remote areas like Wakhan is another.

Antenatal and Postnatal Care - India

The health workers supported by the project work in a variety of settings. Eighty of our health workers are based in schools in eighteen states across India. They work with the school children, their families and wider village communities. Health workers visit villages three times a week and see between ten and twenty patients per week. In addition, they speak to groups, particularly women, and discuss health topics facilitated by the visual aids provided by the 1000 days project. The health workers report on specific categories of patient, rather than total numbers seen. However, based on the reports of 39 health workers over a three-month period reporting on 3,200 patient contacts, 50% of these contacts involve checking the blood pressure of individuals, 16% of whom are existing or newly diagnosed hypertensives and 10% on caring for diabetic patients. During this three-month period 69 cases of TB were detected or monitored by these 39 health workers. They also recorded that nearly 20% of health worker time was spent on antenatal or postnatal care.

Extrapolating from these figures it is estimated that the 80 health workers see 800 individual village patients each week and assuming that they are visiting villages between 30 to 40 weeks a year, this would mean that they would have a minimum of 20,000 to 30,000 individual patient contacts per year. For specific conditions this would equate to:

  • 4,000 to 6,000 antenatal or postnatal contacts per year
  • 10,000 to 15,000 blood pressure checks per year detecting or monitoring 3,200 to 4,800 hypertensive patients
  • 2,000 to 3,000 individual contacts with diabetic patients

Antenatal teaching at individual or group level is facilitated by visual aids provided by the 1000 days project.

This is just one story showing the importance of the work being carried out by the Community Health Workers. Vijaya, who works in Telangana State tells the story of a 20-year-old woman who was 9 months pregnant. Vijaya visited her 15 days before her due date. However, when she went back ten days after the expected date of delivery she discovered that the baby had not yet been born. The family had waited, hoping for a normal home delivery. The pregnant woman was very uncomfortable so Vijaya called an ambulance and she was taken to hospital. She had a female baby by caesarean section. The baby swallowed meconium stained amniotic fluid, but was saved by the intervention of the doctor. Mother and baby are now well. However, the doctor informed the mother that, if she had not gone to hospital when she did, she would have lost her baby.

Thank you again for your support of the 1000 days initiative helping RED International to provide education and support for mothers and children and their wider families and communities. You are helping us to make a difference in the lives of those living in the communities supported through this initiative.

Please share these stories with your friends and contacts through the links provided.  You would be helping us to build a bigger support network for the important work being done by our partners in giving more expectant mothers the support they need at such a critical time for both mother and child. We would appreciate your help with this, thanks again for your partnership.

Using Antenatal resources
Using Antenatal resources
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Organization Information

RED International

Location: Oswestry, Shropshire - United Kingdom
Website:
RED International
Andrew Sinclair
Project Leader:
Andrew Sinclair
Oswestry, Shropshire United Kingdom

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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