In the tropical setting of Vilaculos, Mozambique, our volunteers have been working hard! So hard, that not even the beautiful white sands and crystal clear water could distract them (Well most of the time!) As well as Art days and English classes, our volunteers have been working on some long-term community developments including a Birth Certificate Registration Day and Nutrition Awareness Courses on the Pre-School Orphan Teaching & Community Project. Lets take a look…
Nutrition Awareness Day
With 44% of under fives in Mozambique suffering from stunted growth (World Health Organization), malnutrition is widespread. As in many Southern and Eastern African countries, there are a number of misconceptions amongst the underprivileged communities in Mozambique. For instance, many mothers have begun to bottle feed their children, believing that breastfeeding is outdated and old-fashioned. Together with a diet low in animal products (and in particular meat), many children are missing vital nutrients such as protein and calcium – essential to growth and development. The volunteers on the Pre-School Orphan Teaching & Community Project planned an information day for families in Mahaque. They prepared information on and discussed how to ensure a well-rounded diet, focusing on what food to start weaning babies onto and what to feed the children. They also gave information on sanitation such as cleaning vegetables, sterilizing bottles and water containers and hand washing. After the talk, the volunteers made pap for the children using baby milk powder, xima and sugar, as well as a caril using fresh local produce before eating lunch together with the local women. The day was a successful one for all, with lots of questions answered and information learnt about a balanced diet!! Birth Certificate Registration Day
The volunteers also planned and held another day for families and children. Despite national initiatives to strengthen birth registration systems in recent years, many children in Mozambique are still not officially registered with the government. As well as a lack of knowledge about the importance of birth registration, there are also access issues such as cost and distances to the Registry Office(s) (which are situated in the urban areas – making it difficult for those living in rural communities to get to). Without a birth certificate, children are unable to access basic social services such as school enrollment. At the pre-school in Mahaque, the volunteers – along with the charity CARE International UK
- held a day for all children and their families to come and be officially registered. The day started at 8am and went on until 5pm, a busy day for all (and particularly the volunteers who kept the children entertained all day)!! Now they can progress to Primary school! If whilst reading this, it is lighting a fire inside of you... You feel that excited stirring when the anticipation of a new adventure is on the horizon, then stoke that fire and read more about this exciting project!! Click here for more information about the Pre-School Orphan Teaching & Community Project in Vilalulos, Mozambique.