Imagine if your child could die because of a condition that meant they couldn't feed properly. Imagine that you could learn techniques that could save their life and improve their wellbeing with support at home. MAITS has a simple project that can do just this. Piloted in Jamaica, we trained carers of disabled children. Before we came in to train, there was a serious case review every few months, with a child dying or seriously ill. After our training, there was not one serious case review.
150 million children in the world have a disability and they face exclusion in most areas of their lives. They are "more than twice as likely to report finding health care providers' skills inadequate to meet their needs" (WHO). In Pakistan, there is a huge stigma around disability and families need support. Community Health Workers support families at home, but they do not have disability training- children with disabilities are at risk of preventable early death & living in discomfort.
The WHO states that disabling barriers can be overcome & advise governments to "improve staff education, training and recruitment". MAITS' solution proved effective in Jamaica; children were consistently referred for serious case reviews & after our training not one child died. Our project will support families of children with disabilities within their own homes through local Lady Health Workers, who are supervised by qualified therapists. They can also signpost to specialist services as needed
We are ensuring local people working within their communities have skills to support vulnerable children and their families in their own homes. We work with local charities, academic institutions & local government, building skills rather than sending in external people and tackle the stigma around disability. We also provide resources which are available freely to families, health workers. More skilled support for disability will continue to benefit children and families in the long-term.