Healthcare in a country as vast as Tanzania is difficult. With only one health worker for every 2500 Tanzanians* demand for medical help is great. To tackle these distances, World Vision took health on the road with a mobile clinic for mothers and their children.
In the Shambarai region, the mobile clinic visits Veronika and her 2 children once a month. “If there wasn’t a mobile clinic, I would have to walk for two hours to get to a medical clinic,” Veronika explains.
Veronika looks forwards to visits by project nurse Emma Malle who runs the clinic. Emma’s work for the clinic is diverse: “As well as education on breastfeeding, HIV and sanitation, weighing and measuring babies and children and nutrition, we also give family planning advice, how to avoid pregnancy and education on spacing between children.”
With 4 years nursing training and years of experience with babies and mothers, Emma brings practical experience to the mothers she visits. She’s seen real change since World Vision began running the clinic in 2003. “The presence of this clinic makes a big difference to this community. They can use it for free. Every child under five in Shambarai is now vaccinated, before the clinic it was only 15%.”
Vaccinated against polio, tuberculosis, diptheria and tetanus, Veronika’s children are part of this statistic. “I feel very happy that my children have all these vaccinations because otherwise they would become sick. It would cost me a lot to take to hospital.”
Making healthcare free is the only way to ensure that mothers will have access to immunisation and information about nutrition and immunisation.
And having a clinic coming to them makes parenting easier for the mothers who, like Veronika, balance family and work. “I feel good that my children don’t get sick because then I can do my work. I feel at peace that my children are healthy.”
World Vision wants to ensure that families like Veronika’s have access to healthcare in Tanzania and other countries where healthcare is limited. This is a key focus of our Child Health Now
campaign. Find out what actions you can take today to give your support.
*Appendix 5 Maternal health, Child Health Now, World Vision