#MissionOfHope – Another success story from Somalia
Somalia has been afflicted by one of the world’s most complex humanitarian crises for nearly three decades. Persistent conflict and frequent climatic shocks have been a catalyst for food insecurity, poverty and mass displacement throughout the country. During 2021, an estimated 5.9 million people across Somalia are expected to require humanitarian support, with children comprising 66% of this figure, as the effects of COVID-19 and severe droughts further exacerbate ongoing challenges.
MOAS has been working in collaboration to address these challenges since early 2020 through delivering nutritional aid intended to treat moderate acute malnutrition (MAM), in partnership with the International Medical Corps Somalia and Edesia. Following on from our first testimonial from a beneficiary of our shipment that reached Mogadishu in September, this week, we are pleased to share another positive story from Somalia.
Jamila is 22-year-old mother of five from Bardale village, Baidoa in Somalia’s South West State. She lives with her husband, two sons and three daughters. Due to her husband being unemployed, she supports her family by working as a cleaner for a supermarket. However, as a result of the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19, the store was forced to cut staff salaries to stay in business, with Jamila being one of the employees pushed to take a pay cut and consequently, losing half of her salary. This meant that her young family could only afford one or two meals a day, rather than the three meals they were previously able to source.
“When I was earning a full salary, I could comfortably fend for my family. But since I lost half of it, it has been extremely challenging for me to provide for all our needs considering my husband is still unemployed.”
Jamila’s home is located 3km from the International Medical Corps-supported Bardale Health Center. As a key part of the International Medical Corps’ work, female health workers (FHWs) from the center regularly carry out house visits. During one of their routine visits, the FHWs visited Jamila’s house and after assessing Jamila’s health, they determined she was suffering from acute malnutrition and subsequently referred her to the Bardale Health Center for treatment. Throughout Jamila’s first visit to the facility, she was further assessed by the nutrition staff, who then diagnosed her with moderate acute malnutrition (MAM), as well as discovering that she met the Targeted Supplementary Feeding Programme (TSFP) admission criteria.
“I was unwell and had lost a lot of weight. I knew I had to seek medical help at the Bardale Health Center. They screened and assessed me and they later admitted me to the programme for treatment.”
Jamila’s MAM treatment programme consisted of her visiting the facility on a bi-weekly basis for a period of 3 months, receiving a total of 90 sachets of Plumpy’Sup. During the follow-up visits she also received a multitude of various care services. These included: antenatal care services; maternal, infant and young child nutrition (MIYCN) counselling specifically on nutrition during pregnancy; receiving critical information on nutrition, hygiene and health promotion practices such as handwashing and food hygiene; and lessons on MIYCN from sessions led by International Medical Corps-trained community health workers to guide mothers on optimum MIYCN practices. Thanks to her six visits to the TSFP site, she made a swift recovery, and after the three months, Jamila met the discharge criteria and was deemed cured.
Following her discharge, Jamila expressed her gratitude for the support she received and the training and information imparted to her:
“I lack words to express how grateful I am to International Medical Corps. I just want to thank the organization for their timely assistance and support they have provided to me. International Medical Corps will always be our close friend.”
They taught me on proper breastfeeding and how best to improve my children’s health and nutrition through the IYCF program. I now know how to ensure food safety when cooking and storing meals.”
Jamila was reached in one of the six TSFP sites that International Medical Corps supports across Baidoa town, and thanks to the shipment coordinated by Edesia and MOAS, as of March 25, 2021, International Medical Corps has treated 313 PLWs and 1,377 children with MAM in Somalia.
“International Medical Corps is grateful for Edesia and MOAS’ support of our work in Somalia, and we look forward to your continued support”, stated the agency.
We are very grateful to hear about the positive impact our aid deliveries are having in Somalia and that Jamila was able to make a full recovery. MOAS are thankful to be able to collaborate with the International Medical Corps and Edesia on our shipments of nutritional aid and contribute to bolstering the availability of critical, life-saving services for vulnerable communities.
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