District head says UNICEF, EU preventing underage deaths in Kebbi

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Community Oriented Resource Person, Saidu Ibrahim, providing health services to a year-old girl at the Palace of District Head of Jandutse, under UNIECF and EU Integrated Community Case Management
Community Oriented Resource Person, Saidu Ibrahim, providing health services to a year-old girl at the Palace of District Head of Jandutse, under UNIECF and EU Integrated Community Case Management

MALAM Ibrhaim Abubakar, the District Head of Jandutse, Jega Local Government Area of Kebbi, says UNICEF and EU’s outreach programme is saving the lives of children under five years in the state.

Abubakar, who made this known in Jandutse, on Tuesday, said that the programme tagged, “Integrated Community Case Management (ICCM)” provides healthcare services to children under five years at their doorsteps.

He added that the programme has over the years saved many underage children in the area from preventable death caused by malaria, pneumonia and diarrhea, which were preventable and curable.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the programme was introduced in 2016 to particularly take healthcare services to hard-to-reach (HTR) communities, targeting children under five years.

The State ICCM Focal Person, Mrs Naomi Maidawa, told NAN that about 3,000 community volunteers were trained to provide services against common childhood illnesses specifically malaria, pneumonia, and diarrhea in 1,050 HTR communities.

Maiwada added that the volunteers, selected by community members were trained and kitted as Community Oriented Resource Persons (CORPs) by UNICEF under the UNICEF and EU Maternal, Newborn, Child Health and Nutrition (MNCHN) project.

She said that the CORPs had so far reached 372,789 children under five years from 2016 to 2019.

The district head described the initiative as “life-saving”, pointing out that many children under five years in HTR communities were before now, not accessing healthcare services, thereby leading to several preventable deaths.

“Since the introduction of the intervention by UNICEF and EU, the survival rate of children under five years in my communities have improved due to increased access to healthcare services and drugs.

“The volunteers were reaching out to children in most communities that were hitherto not accessing healthcare services and were treating them of malaria, pneumonia, and diarrhea diseases.

“The CORPs not only provides services against the three major childcare diseases, but also create a linkage between health facilities and the communities,” he said.

Abubakar added that he has mobilised politicians, rich people and businessmen and women in the district to get them to pool resources in support of the initiative for sustainability.

He also said that to encourage the CORPs, who were providing the services for free, the communities have set aside plots of land where they cultivate crops and donate the harvest to the volunteers.

One of the CORPs, Saidu Ibrahim, told NAN that he reaches out to between two and five children under five years daily in his area of coverage.

Ibrahim, who was at the palace of the district head to provide health services to a year-old girl, said that he finds joy providing life-saving services to children.

He thanked UNICEF, EU and his community for giving him the opportunity to serve humanity, particularly saving the life of children, whom he described as the “future of humanity”. (NAN)

– Jan. 28, 2020 @ 12:59 GMT |

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