Every month, Global Volunteers’ caregivers in the Ukwega Ward of Tanzania meet with families who wish to participate in the Reaching Children’s Potential (RCP) Demonstration Program. The goal of RCP is to eliminate childhood stunting in all five of the villages served: Ipalamwa, Makalanga, Lulindi, Ukwega, and Makungu. Specifically, families obtain the nutrition, health care, knowledge, technology, and encouragement needed to combat stunting, and to ensure their children can realize their full potential. We’re happy to welcome two new moms — both of whom are expecting — to the RCP “family” this month.
Vestina Kindole was born in 2002 in Makungu village, where she completed primary school. She is single and lives with her parents. They depend on agriculture, growing corn, beans, and potatoes and selling the surplus. She is expecting her first child in October. Vestina says she decided to join the RCP Program because she is pregnant and she has heard that the program focuses on pregnant women. She says, “I need to be a part of it and get support from RCP. I have heard from my neighbors that the program helps to improve the lives of children and pregnant women so much. My friend told me that through RCP, she learned how to feed her child properly and about the importance of hand-washing stations and how to use them. Also, it is my first pregnancy and I have no idea about how to take care of myself during pregnancy. I heard RCP teaches women how to take care of their pregnancy and gives them free prenatal care. I need to do all of that. Other moms in the RCP Program have told me that the program helps moms to have a safe delivery and helps prevent maternal death. In RCP there is great support through home visits, the Ipalamwa General Clinic, and free transportation. These are the things that attracted me to the program. Also, it surprised me to see moms with children below two and pregnant women receiving the nutritious porridge which helps them grow.” Vestina shares that she hopes to learn from the program, have a safe delivery, receive support from RCP Caregivers, and learn additional skills on breastfeeding and how to take care of her child. “I hope to be a good mom,” she says.
Neema Nyamba was born in Dodoma, where she completed her primary education. She married a pastor in Ipalamwa, where she lives now. She has three children: daughter Theresia (age 11), son Shukuru (age 8), and daughter Rebecca (age 4). She is expecting her third child in December. She depends on agriculture for a living, growing tomatoes, peppers, and beans. Neema says she decided to join the RCP Program because she has heard about the good services provided, such as care at the Ipalamwa General Clinic, weekly home visits with caregivers, and workshops on different topics. “I’m very impressed with the program and I need to get new knowledge and experiences from RCP.” Neema says she hopes to learn a lot in RCP and have a different experience in raising the child she is expecting. She hopes to deliver at the Ipalamwa General Clinic, and receive a hand-washing station and nutritious porridge. She shares that one of her culture’s most important values is to abide by the rules of the society and trust in and depend on God.
About RCP’s Focus on Stunting:
Stunting is the impaired growth and development that children experience from poor nutrition, repeated infection, and inadequate psycho-social stimulation. Children are defined as stunted if their height-for-age is more than two standard deviations below the World Health Organization’s Child Growth Standards median. Global Volunteers’ RCP Program is a child-focused, parent-driven, family-centered, and community-led comprehensive effort beginning with pregnancy and continuing through the 18th birthday, focusing on the first 1,000 days of life. Ending stunting is the goal of the RCP Program in the Ukwega Ward in central Tanzania. Learn more here.
You can help these and over 600 other RCP mothers learn how to enable their children to reach their full potential. Support Global Volunteers’ RCP Program with a monthly or one-time gift now, and join a future service program to bring important resources to families in the Ukwega Ward.