Yesterday the Partners for Care team conducted a malaria reduction outreach. My role was “consultant” so I was an observer. What I observed:
1. Ground prepared The team had selected the area they wanted to help – Marurui slum which is what the PFC team considers their Jerusalem. They met with the Area Chief to keep him informed of the plan. They identified three women who are considered leaders in this slum to lead the teams. Two of these women are part of a women’s support group who are infected and affected by HIV/AIDS, while the other was their leader.
The team praying for the battle ahead
Women lead the way
2. Need identified The team found there were 500 “homes” in this slum. There are 30 orphans and 830 children under the age of 5. This information they obtained from the Area Chief. They also visited the 24-hour clinic in Marurui. They found 5 out of every 15 children under five who come to the clinic have malaria.
3. Developed plan They would deliver and hang 250 nets working in groups of three. They had organized for 7 volunteers from the University of Nairobi to join them. They would teach on malaria prevention, early detection and appropriate treatment. They would write the child’s name on the nets which has shown to ensure better compliance with net use.
Volunteer from University happy to serve
4. Implemented the plan All the volunteers were trained by PFC staff on how and what to teach about malaria. They were shown how to hang the nets and how to record and track by name, age, HIV/AIDS status and pregnancy. The team prayed together and left the what if? Changing Center with 20 nets per team, in groups of 3.
5. Results By 1:00 pm the team had hung 49 nets. The response from the people was very touching. The pictures tell it best and can be seen on www.partnersforcare.blogspot.com. One mother told them I have lived for 7 years in this slum and you are the first to ever visit me. One 10 month baby had never slept under a net even though in the back of their house is a swamp bringing many mosquitoes. The baby had been bitten many times. The team came back together, debriefed and planned to start again today at 10:00am. They will continue their work over the next several days until they have hung 250 nets.
Hanging the nets
Putting babies under nets
6. Follow-up The team will visit the homes where they have hung nets in about a month to check compliance with net use. They will also visit the 24 hour clinic again to see if there has been a reduction in the number of children with malaria from this slum.
Last night 49 children slept under a net preventing them from getting bit by a mosquito that could have been carrying malaria.
Family “smiles again”
This and other work happens because of the financial support of many of you for the PFC team to do the work on the ground – to help them save lives for the kingdom. It doesn’t cost a lot to keep this team working – they have the passion and they are equipped.
Just a hand..
We just need to keep putting the tools in their hands to do the work – nets, computers for teaching those in the slum to better themselves, music equipment they use to both draw the people to hear the message of HIV prevention and to teach the youth to play an instrument, soccer balls, jerseys and soccer shoes to engage the youth in sports instead of idleness.
Examples of costs:
Soccer ball $12.00 Soccer shoes $20.00 Mosquito net $1.50 Rent at the what if? Life Changing Center $250.00 month A PFC staff member $200 a month
Thankful for your support for the team on the ground and to HEART for the bednets,
PS Update – 169 nets have now been hung in Marurui slum Sent via Cingular Xpress Mail with Blackberry