Monday, January 28, 2013

On the Road to Recovery!

by Jenaya Rockman

Sauti Moja staff is privileged with unusually close relationship with beneficiaries, such as the child mothers whom we assist. We promote sponsorship of these girls, but it is not simply about finding a school for a girl and paying her fees.  Rather, we have intimate knowledge of each girl’s story and background; we have visited her home, so know parents and children; we have ensured that the baby is well cared for; and staff provides on-going counsel to determine the type of support that is required. They are sometimes cared for like children of staff!  One such example is Nancy (not her real name), a 16-year old child mother.  

Nancy's doing well after a long difficult childbirth.  
In September, child mother Nancy, had a difficult delivery of her baby at her home in a remote village. The following day, her family arranged for her to be transported to the hospital in Longido. Though she received medical interventions, she did not improve; she remained unable to move and eat on her own, and was almost comatose. The doctor eventually recommended that she be taken to the regional hospital in Arusha.  Happy, a member of our staff, facilitated the transfer, saying, “I know a lot of mothers die as a result of childbirth here, and the hospitals do not offer very good care. I was quite concerned that this girl might die; she looked so sick and was not improving.”
Baby Baraka is well cared for and
now both mother child have a hope
for a bright future.

The Tanzanian healthcare system provides many challenges, especially for marginalized people who do not speak the official language and are unknowledgeable about the medical system. Nancy stayed in hospital for more than a month, but since her family members do not speak Swahili, a friend, Ester, cared for mother and baby Baraka, including bathing and providing meals.  In addition, our staff visited Nancy twice a week to monitor her care and advocate for her, press overworked doctors and nurses for updates on her health, and purchase pharmaceuticals needed for Nancy’s treatment. In addition, Sauti Moja supplemented the family’s contribution to medical and associated expenses, as they were unable to cover all costs.

After three weeks of testing for a variety of illnesses, including meningitis and tuberculosis, receiving a blood transfusion, and being treated with several types of antibiotics, the doctor concluded and told our staff that Nancy had post-partum psychosis. She was prescribed medication for this illness, and after another three weeks, recovered enough to go home where staff continued to monitor her physical and emotional progress.

We are pleased that Nancy has recovered; she can walk on her own, eat on her own, and take care of Baraka. Soon, she will be able to continue her education and pursue vocational training.  You can only imagine the gratitude that Nancy and her family extend to Sauti Moja and the donors who helped her survive and who will provide a promising future for Nancy and Baraka.

For more information on Sauti Moja programs, select from the side margin or go to

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