MUMC & COR – Feeding program benefits children in Nsanje District

Hunger is one of the most severe roadblocks to the learning process and Mary meals, a non-governmental organization started feeding programs in all public schools in Malawi.  On the other hand, hunger may make underfive children more prone to illness and other health issues. The communities in Zwaki and Wilson villages started feeding these children on their own with Thobwa (a local drink made from maize and millet). Therefore, The Malawi United Methodist Church (COR) in partnership with church of the Resurrection (COR) from Kansas city in the USA, came in to tsupport these community based feeding programs with  nutritious porridge to underfive children who do not attend public schools.

A caregiver serving Thobwa to children at Zwaki village

Having seen the need at  feeding centers, MUMC-COR donated  various kitchen utensils to Zwaki and Wilson villages. These included:-100  plastic plates, spoons, cups, 2 basin, hand washing facility, 1 big pot etc for each site.

MUMC vehicle bringing the items at Zwaki while the children looked on from their feeding shelter

A warm welcome from children as the MUMC vehicle arrived at Wilson village

The communities were given basic information on hygiene and disease prevention, how to plan, operate, and monitor a successful feeding program.

A total number of 104 and 134 children were screened for malnutrition using Middle Upper Arm Circumference (MUAC) tape at Zwaki and Wilson respectively. Zwaki had 16 and Wilson had 19 malnourished children who were given priority to be recruited  into the program.

Registration of children before screening at Zwaki

Registration before screening at Wilson

Each site has a total number of 100 children including the malnourished who are served with a nutritious porridge once a day for the whole year to alleviate hunger and enhancing nutrition in the underfive children.

Trained male health volunteer assisting with the screening at Zwaki

 

Some of the beneficiaries of the program at Wilson

Some of the beneficiaries of the program at Zwaki

Unlike the public school feeding programs, the program also targets the maintenance of the children’s nourishment by educating their mothers or guardians on how to provide healthy foods without much expense. It also aims at normalizing the weight of the identified undernourished children.

These community-based feeding programs mobilize community members, promote mutual aid, empower program leaders, foster intersectoral partnerships among villages, community organizations and strengthen communities, and deliver health promoting messages and activities

“It’s been a good thing for the community-at-large … for the image of the church … the children and parents have a chance to socialize with new friends over here, you can sit down and chat to them ..” said local chief Wilson

“I like the whole program, it’s great. It has been a long time coming and it is great. They have had these programs in the public schools for a long time so it’s so good to see it here in our communities. May the Lord bless you and the donors!”, said one woman.

MUMC and COR, reaching out to the troubled world! As the journey continues!

 

By Mercy Chikhosi Nyirongo

 

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About wandikweza

We are a team of nurses, midwives and a public health practitioners working in limited resource settings
This entry was posted in Early Childhood Development. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to MUMC & COR – Feeding program benefits children in Nsanje District

  1. Daniel mhone says:

    Belmont UMC your miracle gift is appreciated now BOT will start very soon construction of church at Zwaki as bricks are already there. Praise God we are moving in the right direction. We are humbled by your support.

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