News from Rumbek
Nursing Mothers receive Infant Care Kits from MCC
Babies need special care because they have low immunity and are thus prompt to infection. As leaders of tomorrow, they need a clean and conducive environment to grow in. For nursing mothers, Infant Care Kits are useful to help them give their babies a good start.
In June, the Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) distributed 264 Infant Care Kits, through the Loreto Primary Health Care Centre (LPHCC) and at the Missionaries of Charity orphanage (Pan-Ngath). The distributions were done along with a sensitization and awareness training on child and maternal health issues from LPHCC nurses.
With few mothers in the area attending maternal health clinics, the distribution of the kits provided a good avenue for the mothers to be educated on basic childcare skills and how to handle common challenges in child health.
In the two recent discharge of children enrolled in the LPHCC feeding program, caregivers and children benefited from Infant Care Kits, with each parcel containing a bathing soap, four aprons, a pair of socks, two dresses and a baby muffin all wrapped in a lovely soft blanket.
Mothers were also provided with mild laundry soap to emphasize the importance of good hygiene in early childhood care. In a relatively cooler rainy season, mothers benefitted highly because they were able to keep babies warm and away from mosquitoes too.
In the local orphanage (Pan Ngath), distribution of kits was combined with the Loreto Peace Club outreach activity, also sponsored by MCC. The combination of these two events was of great impact because the Peace Club members were able to help the caregivers to clean their living area during the visit. The exercise reinforced the brief training on sanitation provided by Ms. Gloria, the LPHCC nurse who had also accompanied the students and managed the distribution.
According to Ms. Gloria, “The infant care kits are helpful in preventing babies from hypothermia and heat or cold. The whole process of their distribution promotes babies’ hygiene and smartness, factors that promote love and bonding between the babies and their mothers or caregivers. Furthermore, it helps to prevent eye infections because mothers and caregivers are able to wash their babies’ faces with soap.”
The kits have continually been of great help to the nursing mothers and caregivers. Three months after distribution, mothers came back to the LPHCC for follow up and still hold that the ICK continue to be of great support.
As Hellen Ding, one of caregiver recently discharged from the LPHCC emergency feeding program explains, “The Infant Care Kit has really helped my son and me because I have been able to change his clothes more frequently. The clothes are colourful and easy to note when they are dirty.
…Moreover, I now have more clothes for him and I can keep him clothed even when I’m washing his dirty clothes. It has also reduced the burden of me buying him clothes which are expensive in the market. We were also given health education on how to care and handle babies, like we are supposed to wash their hands and clean their faces before feeding them. Using these skills and seeing my son’s health improve has made me a happy mother.“
It was a great relief for nursing mothers in the LPHCC emergency feeding program and local orphanage after they received the MCC infant care kits.