AIESEC JKUAT interns and An Honest Intention (AHI) did a joined report named Happy and Health based on Frank Educational Center (FEC), Dagoretti. It was conceptualized when the AIESEC interns noted that many children in Kenya do not have access to proper healthcare and thus suffer diseases that most often times impact their physical and intellectual growth. They noted the need for proper checkups, diagnosis and treatment which can only be achieved through proper health education.
AIESEC JKUAT has organized and implemented over the past years teaching programs sustained by volunteers from all over the world. The interns working in the slums have identified that the communities need more than proper health education- they need practical ways to reduce disease outbreaks that have the potential of affecting all persons, especially children.
The project was initiated in FEC on the 16-20th of June, 2014. 135 children (72 girls and 63 boys) participated in the project that aimed to meet the following two objectives:
- A health education class on personal hygiene, sanitation and waste disposal and management mechanisms (including topics on nutrition, HIV, malaria, tuberculosis and infections)
- Health checkups that included physical examination, nutritional status assessment, visual acuity, heart and respiratory rate
Findings revealed that the most common problems were:-
- Difficulty breathing
- Visual problems
- Symptoms strongly suggesting parasite infection (abdominal pain, loose stools containing mucus, itching, weight loss, fatigue and uncontrollable hunger)
Some of the children also suffered from otitis, skin infections, untreated wounds (one needed stitches and was taken to the clinic) and umbilical hernias. 40.7% had some visual problems which require further evaluation with proper equipment to determine the need for glasses. 7% of the children were underweight, 15% were overweight or obese and 5% where severely obese. The remaining 78% of the children were of normal weight.
Some of the recommendations made by the interns included treating of parasite infections, implementing proper hand washing and other hygiene habits, and adjustment of sitting arrangements until further visual assessments can be done. They also suggested more protein in the diet and that children with severe cases of malnutrition should be taken to health facilities in the vicinity. Ear, eye, throat and wound infections ought to be treated as soon as possible to avoid future complications.
For the full report, click Healthy and Happy – Report Frank Educational Centre.