Malnutrition is preventable. Helping Hand for Survivors believes in good nutrition, which is the child’s foundation and development. Knowing that well-nourished children are better able to grow well, to learn, to participate in their communities, and to be resilient when it comes to disease or disaster, HHS works hard with parents to make sure that they follow advice and feed their children with available food in lieu of waiting for help that is not known to the community or when the help will be available to them. Helping Hand for Survivors has been using local maize, soy and sorghum flour as well as vegetables produced by local farmers. HHS reduced its beneficiaries with malnutrition to 200 children with acute malnutrition due to a high demand and focused on that above number. Only after eight months after following those few you can see the result. Mr. Espoir (Hope) pictured bellow is one of our examples of the impact that HHS is making among these children in Mumosho and Kalehe.
In Democratic Republic of Congo, malnutrition is linked to nearly half of all childhood deaths under 5 taking away their lives. For many children, chronic malnutrition will result in stunting, which is a permanent condition that certainly stunts a child’s mental and physical growth. Some of the reasons for these cases are low maternal education level (primary school), lack of clean water, (there are no tap water available to people), male who reject their wives after being raped and they don’t have jobs, and the age of the children (who cannot help themselves) are significant indication of that emaciation. It has been a challenge because most of our beneficiaries are orphans and others unwanted just because they were born out of rape. While mothers are dealing with the trauma from rejection and rape, she has no choice, but also caring for her unwanted child/children and has no mean at all. HHS has been closely following these children and we hope there will be less mortality among children under the age of 5.