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AAAAb © Action contre la Faim Nigeria.

Testimony

NIGERIA

Action against hunger’ stabilization center helps children win the battle against malnutrition

At seven-month-old, Adam was brought to the Stabilization Centre managed by Action Against Hunger, He was unusually underweight for his age. Adam weighed 2.9 kilograms. His Mid Upper Arm Circumference (MUAC) was 6.6 centimetres.

"I could not breastfeed my baby and he was emaciating and passing watery stool"
Maimuna Bukar, Adam’s mother
Mobbar

Maimuna lives in a community that is over 10 km away from the stabilization centre. Adam’s grandmother concurred that her daughter was unable to breastfeed and the baby’s health, had declined rapidly.

“We even tried feeding him with cow milk and that aggravated his condition before my mother recommended we visit the clinic after exhausting all options,” Maimuna recalls.

 

On arrival at the stabilization centre, Adam was hospitalized and treated with therapeutic milk (F-100), rehydration solution for malnutrition (RESOMA) and antibiotics,” says Mustapha Tahiru, a seconded nurse from the Mobbar Local Government Primary Health Care (PHC).

The centre also provided Adam’s mother with daily food rations that stimulated production of breastmilk. The staff encouraged Maimuna to put the baby to breast to stimulate breastmilk production.

Damasak (1) © Action contre la Faim Nigeria.

Nigéria Centre de stabilisation Damasak

© Action contre la Faim Nigeria.

“Aside the feeding of my baby I also participated in sensitization and awareness on Infant & Young Child Feeding (IYCF), I have also learned to encourage my friends whose babies have growth problems to send them to the centre as soon as possible,” Maimuna.

To improve Adam’s nutrition, after his appetite returned and his weight increased to above 3.5kg he was placed on RUTF to help him catch up on his growth as quickly as possible. His weight at discharge was 4.2kg and MUAC was 9.2cm.

“My baby is looking great and I am thankful to God and AAH for coming to my aid,” I think he is well now, he is looking healthy, and does not cry all the time, like before, his grandmother said.

For mothers like Maimuna who do not have a reliable means of earning income, the centre is a lifeline for their sick children. According to Mustapha Tahiru, a seconded nurse from the Mobbar Local Government Primary Health Care (PHC).

"Approximately 30-40 people, from communities, some as far as 60km, walk into the centre daily with cases of either severe or moderate acute malnutrition"
Mustapha Tahiru, nurse
Mobbar

Besides managing cases of malnutrition, the centre doctors also provide free medical consultation for children and other patients, free medicine such as antibiotics and vitamin supplements.

Action Against Hunger’s European Union Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid (ECHO) funded program integrates health, nutrition, protection, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services targeting women and children in Mobbar and Gubio Local Governments. The project also supports awareness raising activities for mothers, health monitoring and provision of supplementary food for those who are malnourished and needing care. AAH has so far treated over 5,000 malnutrition cases in the area.

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