A Week with Mentor Mothers!

One of the goals of the BI’s Health and Nutrition Project is to develop a home based care program that specifically targets children and youth.  Our new group of 16 Child and Youth care workers has been hard at work since they were hired last October.  They have been busy distributing household health surveys in the community so that we can determine exactly how many youths they will be working with.  They’ve also had their first training sessions with the National Association of Child Care Workers (NACCW) Isibindi program.  Next year promises even more training as we have our sights set on the Mentor Mothers program.

their first training sessions with the National Association of Child Care Workers (NACCW) Isibindi program to learn the fundamentals of Child and Youth Care Work

Learning the fundamentals of Child and Youth Care Work with the Isibindi program.

Mentor Mothers is a program formed in 2010 that focuses on improving child health and development, maternal health and birth outcomes.  Their primary target groups are pregnant women and malnourished children aged 0-6 years.

Mentor Mothers regularly weigh children to make sure they are properly nourished.  The same Mentor Mother works with a newborn until 6 years of age.

Mentor Mothers regularly weigh children to make sure they are properly nourished.  Each Mentor Mother is assigned to a pregnant woman and follows the newborn’s progress up to 6 years of age.

The BI has formed a valuable friendship with the Mentor Mothers and will be exchanging Early Childhood Development training for childhood care training.  Our 16 youth care workers were able to spend a week in Zithulele following the Mentor Mothers during their household visits and seeing firsthand the type of work they’ll be trained to do in the near future.

Our youth care workers were paired up with Mentor Mothers and followed them on their routes, sometimes visiting as many as six households.

Our youth care workers were paired up with Mentor Mothers and followed them on their routes, sometimes visiting as many as six households per day.

The Mentor Mothers cover a huge area around Zithulele.  We did lots of walking!

The Mentor Mothers cover a huge area around Zithulele. We did lots of walking!

Mentor Mothers do Early Childhood Development with the children by asking them to sort colors and draw pictures.

Mentor Mothers do Early Childhood Development with the children by asking them to sort colors and draw pictures.

Children are asked to make animals out of plato to test their cognitive development.

Children are asked to make animals out of playdough to test their cognitive development.

We hope to have our own Mentor Mothers program up and running very soon and will be sure to share stories of their amazing work on this blog!

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