IT’S UNDOUBTEDLY IMPORTANT TO DELIVER IN HOSPITAL

When the KMET team arrives in Yala C.C.A_Johera Muhoho Church ground at 10am, they navigate the almost impassable roads which have been worsened by the heavy rains that have been falling of late. The magnitude of the villagers gathered is impressive. They are eager to hear more from KMET and voice out the experiences and grievances faced at the community health facility.DSCN4651

Well, before KMET’s Uzaaji Salama project rolled out in Yala sub-county, a lot of the pregnant mothers would die in the hands of the village midwives and the babies would be vulnerable health-wise since they were not taken for clinical visits which are important for babies’ growth and development.

DSCN4667 Men like this one here is very supportive. He advises his fellow men to assist their pregnant wives during pregnancy and delivery since it’s not the woman’s place alone to ensure that the pregnancy is uncomplicated.

DSCN4675 Jane, a mother of three, praises the Uzaaji Salama initiative because her deliveries in hospital were safe and uncomplicated. She says, “I’ve seen my children grow up healthy all thanks to Uzaaji Salama. I’m glad I listened to the CHVs to deliver in hospital and to always take my children to clinic.”

Uzaaji Salama not only urges mothers to deliver in hospital but also advocates for their maternal health rights. It lends ears to all the grievances raised by the mothers and follow up with health facilities. The Uzaaji Salama looks into such complaints by listening and setting up meetings with the Siaya county representatives(because Uzaaji Salama project only takes place in Siaya county and its sub-counties)in order to address these complaints. The mothers complain of being treated poorly in hospitals when they go to deliver so the Uzaaji Salama team has partnered with the CHVs who urge the villagers to consider delivering in hospital and who ensure these mothers are treated well in hospitals and the equipment are up to date.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Advertisements

SILENT KILLER

Recently Kenya lost a prominent senator Ben Oluoch Okello of Migori county who succumbed to cancer. A good number of Kenyans have lost their lives due to cancer which has reached an invasive stage. Cancer if detected in time can be managed thus saving lives. Below is a poem on cervical cancer urging sexually active women to screen for cervical cancer in time for proper and effective management. I hope you learn from it remember, cervical cancer if detected early can be managed.

SILENT KILLER
Some of you say I am a myth while some say I got no cure,
Today I want to reveal my real self to you,
I am cervical cancer or better still; silent killer,
I have neither heart nor Saul,
I shatter hope, corrode faith and cripple love,
I am silent, invisible but I do exist,
Some say I am aweful, heartless and evil,
I leave hearts broken, words unspoken and graves open,
I live with you only if you allow me to,
I love you so much, do you love me?

I am known by many yet I know none
With neither prejudice nor bias I come,
I am not a thief nut I come like a thief,
I steal from you love, health and comfort,
I devour al leaving none behind,
I touch a living body leaving a mark of death,
I am not kind or maybe I am,
Quick recovery wishes shake me not,
You call me I come, you welcome me I stay
I am your friend, always there for you any time.

Survival is for the fittest how fit are you?
Just like a dove I love,
To handle me you got to use your brain,
Wait not till I lose my patience,
I serve no justice to the weak,
No mercy for the innocent,
No worry about the poor,
You can call me names; son of a bitch,
Hate me, right?
Your eyes are full of tears who is going to swim in there?
Come close let me whisper in your ears,
I am a silent killer.

MY UNTOLD STORY

Having had abort my child was the lowest point I’d have ever gotten. Many years later, I look back and I still shed tears sometimes of joy sometimes of sorrows. What If I hadn’t aborted? I would have been a mum. The boy/girl would have been 8 or so years now. Maybe I would have been having a second born or so! Question is would I have been happy? Would I have been that deserving mum? Or maybe I would have followed in the suit of my peers and run away like all the dead beat mothers who run away from the responsibilities?

I will never find out. All I know is I was deprived of the chance to see my own! Years later now I can’t sire a child of my own. Years later, I have a medical condition that deprives me of the luxury of having a child of my own. Years later I am on medication trying to rectify a condition that I am not sure will ever come to pass.

I guess years later I am “eating my tomatoes” literally. Years later here I am in a sorry state of not knowing whether my sexuality counts. I cry about it. I weep about it. A beautiful woman   but with nothing to offer to the so called society! It’s hard but well I am learning to cope with it. Some of these things I have only seen on TV. I am seeking a remedy.  Peace is not something I have known in the last two weeks. Sleep is something I only hear in small talks.”  I have no one to blame and sometimes I feel like taking my own life so as to escape from all this trauma. Sometimes I feel that I should blame the same society that expect to see my babies. But why??

The pressure that come with   having a baby while a girl is not married pushed me into all the, regrets affecting me know, A girl who gives birth is often looked down upon, laughed at and sometimes   disowned by the society,

The truth still stands, it is easy to lose sight of the story of the individual girl with an unplanned pregnancy within the context of varying legal and socio- cultural barriers and her journey to access safe abortion services The reality is that girls are often alone and confused about which options are available to them and unable to cope with the financial and emotional implications of their choice, they all know that it was never a safe one and I almost die, The question is have  we done enough yet to young people, what does the society requires of us still? Your views will help someone you never know..

Story shared by young person, who would like to remain anonymous

 

CLAIMING TOMMORROW’S FUTURE

LET’S HEAR IT FOR THE AFRICAN CHILD

iday (1)international-day-of-the-african-child-vector-20754138

There was a touching story based on a real life experience that got adapted into a movie that moved many viewers to tears.It deserved to be acclaimed for it drytouched on issues that a bigger percentage of African children can find themselves in if adults(their guardians/parents)feed their minds with paper chase and greed for riches. This applauded movie,”Dry” tells of the ordeal of a child who’s married off to a 60 year old man and whose mother got impregnated by her uncle when she was at 13 years of age but her aunt wouldn’t hear of it. She became judgmental of her and compared her to her mother who she claimed was loose. She thought and readily assumed her husband was a saint little did she know. Do you ever ask yourself if we weren’t too quick to render judgement on such a child, how more they’d open up and tell the truth? “Dry” being set in a rural Nigerian specifically Hausa ethnic group; child marriage is upheld. These children’s reproductive system isn’t fully developed and to make matters worse, they go through prolonged excruciating labor before they call a native doctor who has delivered many women in the village before. They end up suffering shame and pain of fistula as they are shunned by the society.

It’s not undisclosed that child marriages are rampant all over Africa but the fight against child marriages starts with me and you. Imagine an Africa where children are left to be children and their rights are respected and really protected. Imagine an Africa where children get full access to quality health even though their parents barely have anything to feed them with. Imagine an Africa where children get education regardless of the remotest place they live in. Imagine an Africa where children particularly the girl child are not sold away to a man old enough to be her grandfather’s age. Imagine an Africa where children get to fully enjoy their childhood without being made parents too soon…an Africa where children don’t get to give birth to children. Imagine an Africa where children are safe from sex predators who lure them or even force themselves in them and infect them with unfathomable infections and diseases. Imagine an Africa that has her eyes open and ready to leave behind atrocious cultural practices such as early marriages that yield lamentable occurrences like fistula.

Let’s make a little heaven for our children where they are safe and protected from the evils that lurks around. Let’s make Africa smile by making the children enjoy their childhood because after all, childhood doesn’t last forever. Let’s not rush them to be adults or force them into early marriages just to fatten our pockets and stomachs when they deserve much more than cultural practices. Let’s criticize the cultural practices and get to see which ones to keep and which ones to drop. As for leadership, again, it starts with you and me; not just politicians. Let’s ensure that children get access to education for that’s the most important and powerful tool we can empower them with. Donate a blackboard. Donate a book. Start a cheap library in your neighborhood. Donate a pen/pencil. Offer to share knowledge at a local school while you wait to join campus or get a job.Health is essential for without good health, no one can be productive.Advice and follow up with the guardians on issues of health issues. There are some health insurances like M-TIBA whereby they can put in as little as Ksh 20 every now and then. I dare you to be the voice of the children forced into early marriages. Fight for them for it is a battle worth your effort. Finally, as we commemorate Day of The African Child on 16th June, let’s always strive to put a smile on the African children’s facesmaxresdefault1-600x428 by the little things we do for them that enhances their physical and mental health and education and diminishes heinous traditional practices.

#LeaveNoOneBehind
#DayOfTheAfricanChild

Genuine public participation Anchored on Sound Policy and legal framework for effective service delivery

According to article 174 (c) and (d) in the new constitution, some of the objectives of the devolved Government is to give powers of the self-governance to the people and enhance the participation of the people in the exercise of the power of the state and making decision affecting them, to recognize the right of communities to manage their own affairs and to further their development among others.
The journey to formulate a Kisumu County public participation act started back in 2015, two years ago with the main aim was to bring CSOs together, to build capacity of the community and to work with the media in airing the community voice.

Citizens often possess local knowledge and can propose innovative solutions that would lead to better resource allocation decisions even though government administrators, officials, and community leaders have long recognized the value of public participation for a variety of purposes, processes, and decisions and it is undoubted that local community involvement in the decision making process will enhance the outcome of the framework of a proposed development plan, they frequently do not have a good understanding of how to design participation processes to achieve desirable outcomes.

The seven COSs behind the draft public participation policy today met with executives led by the Deputy Governor Kisumu County D.r Mathews Owili, for review of the document. The public participation is based on a concept that those who are affected by a decision have the right to be involved and be hard in the decision –making process.

UNDERSTANDING CERVICAL CANCER

UNDERSTANDING CERVICAL CANCER
What comes into your mind when you hear one talk of cervical cancer? Cancer is a disease in which cells in the body grows out of control. There are various types of cancer named after the body part from which it starts. Cervical cancer starts from the cervix hence the name. The cervix is the lower narrow end of the uterus which connects the vagina to the upper part of the uterus. It is the opening to the womb. Cervical cancer is caused by the Human Papilloma virus (HPV) which is passed from the males to the females during sexual intercourse making sexually active women to be at a higher risk of getting cervical cancer. In addition to HPV, there are other contributing factors that increases the risk of cervical cancer that is, excessive smoking of cigarettes, having HIV,using birth control pills over a long period of time.

At the initial stages, cervical cancer do not show any noticeable signs and symptoms making it difficult to detect. This call for the need of regular and timely screening done through a simple test to detect any changes in the cervix that can turn to be cancer. There are two types of tests that can be done to detect the change in the cervix that is: visual inspection with Acetic Acid (VIA) also known as rapid vinegar test and the Pap smear test. VIA entails careful insertion of a speculum through the vagina, spraying the cervix with acetic acid and checking whether the cervix has a white spot which may be a sign of cervical cancer. In case the white spot is detected it is removed through freezing in a process called cryotherapy which is quick, painless and highly effective.

It takes many years for cancer to develop therefore it may not be helpful to screen women under the age of 25 while women above the age of 49 have lower chances of infection. HIV positive women should go for screening once every year while VIA negative women should go for screening after every five years. Women having cancer at advanced stages are referred to other health facilities for further management by the health practitioners. Cervical cancer is real, it makes children orphans, men widowers, parents lonely and the community to lag behind. The fight against cervical cancer starts now irregadless of sex or age, Make an effort of visiting KMET Corkran clinic for cervical cancer and treatment before it is too late because there is no remedy to time wasted. We must win this fight.

SEE & TREAT

BEAT CERVICAL CANCER

18th May 2018 Friday, marked the end of Free Cervical Cancer Screening & Treatment training and project at JOOTRH. The hospitals represented by the nurses trained were KMET Corkran Clinic, Masaba Hospital, Ahero Medical Centre, Kisumu County Hospital (KCH), JOOTRH, Migosi Hospital and Masogo Sub-County Hospital. After the 5days of training and implementing the knowledge acquired for cervical cancer screening and treatment, the nurses called it quits at 1pm and headed for a short test. Certificates were handed to them by Rebecca Lopsik; Program Director of curecervicalcancer.org, CEO of JOOTRH; Ogutu and Executive Director of KMET; Monica Oguttu. After all, it’s a training worth celebration and appreciation. Speaking of celebration, it can’t go unmentioned that the feat CBK band delighted the clients as they waited to be served. They made them laugh, smile and definitely eased their tension.

Vote of thanks was given by KMET’s very own Monica Oguttu, curecervicalcancer.org’s Rebecca Lopsik, JOOTRH’s CEO Ogutu and Monica on behalf of County Health director’s office. Monica urged the health facilitators to implement what they’ve been trained to do regarding cervical cancer screening (VIA method—Visual Inspection with Acetic Acid) and treatment by means of cryotherapy. She further impelled them to apply knowledge gained within the 5days, consult and seek advice. She encouraged them to use Community Health Volunteers (CHVs) and take advantage of any chance such as weddings and funerals to urge women to come for cervical cancer screening.

Apart from the vote of thanks, it had surely been an eventful and educative week characterized by entertainment such as the Road show which was a good mobilization method for people inquired more about this See & Treat project “Free Cervical Cancer Screening & Treatment.” Also, in the bright sunshine, Lolwe TV crew paid JOOTRH a visit in order to inquire more about this initiative; Free Cervical Cancer Screening & Treatment by KMET in partnership with curecervicalcancer.org

By the way, women aged 50 and above were referred to Marie Stopes and Family Health Options Kenya for Pap smear since the screening here was VIA which doesn’t give clear results for such ages because a part in the cervix(squamocolumnar junction cervix–SJC) has become less visual with age. Ages below 25 were not really at risk besides the cervix would be loose hence not able to hold pregnancy if they go for screening every now and then from that tender age.

Some men thought that since HPV is gotten via sexual intercourse and they are the carrier, they need to be tested yet some were green about what cervical cancer is and which part of the body it affects. Such thought it’s a disease that affects the throat but at the end of the day, they were properly sensitized. Some clients posted for photo shots and many expressed how grateful they are for taking the chance to be screened and hoped more initiatives like this would be done often.

Finally, the number of women screened is 407 of which 10 were found “suspicious” and referred immediately and 8 tested “positive” so cryotherapy was done. The training is a wrap and the health facilitators instigate for provision of CO2 gas for cryotherapy at their health facilities. They were reminded that documentation is essential because every month, data will be collected by Community Health Nurse from KMET(Faith). Masaba Hospital, Ahero Medical Center and KMET Corkran Clinic will soon be equipped with cryotherapy essentialities.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.