Improving nutrition in the Safe Home
Fortunately, appetite loss is easy to identify. All it takes is a spoonful of peanut butter and a little patience.
The Safe Home Supervisor implemented this appetite last month and now uses it diligently for all incoming clients.
Focusing on growth and development
Everyone agreed that instead of discussing weights in arbitrary numbers, a visual aid (with spikes, plateaus, and dips in the child’s weight) would aid discussion to identify episodes of illness or other reasons for the lack of weight gain. TTL staff could then tailor their counseling to address specific issues – whether diarrhea management, using TTL food parcels for optimum child feeding, or the importance of hygiene & sanitation. Eager to use the growth charts, some Outreach staff have started plotting weights of children in the Safe Home and are practicing their counseling skills on the Safe Home caregivers!
In their monthly meeting, the caregivers discussed activities that some of them found difficult: for example, strategies to feed fussy eaters and time management tips to avoid wasteful activities. During this peer learning exercise, we oriented them to the new forms, which contain additional monitoring steps to provide more expert support to the Safe Home clients. The caregivers have already started charting individual food intake and health parameters flawlessly! They even reported that they now feel as knowledgeable as the hospital nurses. And should any problems arise, they know they can just ask each other for help.
The TTLF Fellow is a representative of the North American organisation Touching Tiny Lives Foundation. Based for one year in Mokhotlong, Lesotho, the TTLF Fellow serves in an administrative support capacity for the Basotho charity Touching Tiny Lives (TTL).