Foundation for Children’s Rights (FCR) has empowered rural communities in Mzimba to demand quality healthcare services, especially for pregnant women and young children.
For three years, FCR has trained health advisory committees and staff on how they can work together to improve service delivery in the remote health centres of Engucwini, Ezondweni and Mpherembe.
Amid tales of shortage and theft of drugs in the country’s healthcare system, the transformative partnership is credited with making sure the facilities have constant supply of medical supplies.
“The health centres receive the supplies monthly. However, the main challenges is that the supplies are low,” said FCR executive director Jennifer Mkandawire.
The child rights organisation’s work in the area has also exposed how rapid population growth had overtaken the amount of goods and services offered by government.
The community-based health committees record and monitor the drugs as they arrive and get dispensed.
After knowing their rights, the locals have lobbied the district health office to increase the amount of medicines in the health centres which were receiving drugs for just half of their target population .
The rural communities thank FCR for increased awareness which has led to fewer maternal death, rising male involvement in safe motherhood, youth access to sexual and reproductive health options and construction of houses for health surveillance assistants in health centres struggling with sexually transmitted diseases, teen pregnancies and HIV and Aids. n