It’s been a whole month since I’ve had something to say on here and even now I still don’t have a lot!
I’ve been in the process of starting some consistent projects; consistent as opposed to doing the project once and being done we’re hoping these will continue even after I leave. I have also been trying to work on a grant. I have to say the grant is not going as smoothly as I hoped, but then again my problem in the first place probably was hoping anything at all! As for my consistent projects, things have been going pretty well!
My counterpart Ester and I, with the help of another Community Health Worker, Pius, along with sporadic help from the nurses have begun educating the HIV patients when they come to pick up their medication monthly as well as teaching lessons during the clinic for pregnant women every Thursday! So far we have taught about the importance of increased blood production during pregnancy, aka how to avoid anemia and what to do if you become anemic. For the HIV patients, our first lesson we taught about how to plant and care for Moringa as well as it’s various uses after it has grown (if you don’t know what the heck I’m talking about go check it out it’s amazing! Just Google “moringa”), and this month we have started teaching about the life cycle of malaria and the harsh effects it can have, especially for those living with HIV, and how to avoid it.
After Ester and I returned from the training we attended in December she planted all of the Orange Flesh Sweet Potatoes (OFSP) we were given, but unfortunately there was not enough rain at that time to sustain them so the majority of them died. However, we were lucky enough to find someone else growing them that sold me a large bundle and we came back and planted those sometime in January. Currently they are continuing to grow wonderfully and we have started distributing clipping for the HIV patients so they can begin to grow them at their own homes! OFSP are a healthier alternative to regular sweet potatoes that most people currently grow here because they have a higher content of Vitamin A.
For the next 2 weeks I will be out of my village. For the first week I will be capitalizing on the opportunity I was given to go and assist with pre-service training for the new health/ag volunteers, so I will be spending a lovely couple of days in my favorite place (Morogoro) sharing ideas, meeting new people, and of course stopping in to see Mama Nelly! For the second week I will be making my way to Dar where I will be attending a health committee meeting for a couple of days before I start making my way back to my village.
As always I am excited for the short break but right now I feel like projects are really starting to come together so I look forward to returning to keep the ball rolling!