Thought you might be encouraged by these 2 updates that were put together by our Communications Team...2 examples of how God uses the unsung heros of the Infant Feeding Program and the BioMed Team to bring hope and healing to some of the world's forgotten poor.
Haingo needed intense care to bring her back from the brink. Her cleft palate was the greatest concern; her inability to breastfeed/nurse left her severely malnourished. Her bilateral cleft palate left her face severely disfigured. Haingo was almost seven months old and weighed a fragile 2.2kg (less than 5 lbs) when she was admitted with her mother Viviaby to the Africa Mercy ward. She immediately began the infant feeding program (IFP).
Every few hours - around the clock - Haingo was fed milk and supplements with an oral syringe by nurses who rocked her and prayed. Within days the tiny baby stopped her constant crying, she stopped frowning and her mother slept soundly for the first time in many months. Little by little, the tide was turned and Haingo began to gain weight. Viviaby began to believe her precious daughter would survive. In 10 days Haingo’s health had stabilised enough for Viviaby to relocate to the Hospital Outpatients (HOPE) Centre and mother and daughter began frequent visits to the IFP dietitian. Jillian helped Viviaby understand how to effectively feed her baby, and provided her with the supplies and equipment she needed. Haingo’s gradual weight gain was monitored and celebrated. Mother and baby relaxed into a nurturing environment.
Haingo began to reach her developmental milestones as her slowly growth progressed. Jillian and Viviaby worked together week after week, reaching towards twin goals. When Haingo weighed 3.5kg she would be strong enough to have surgery to restore her cleft lip, but she had to be ten months to have surgery to restore her palate. Both goals were met and surgery became possible!
Doctors and nurses depend on well-functioning equipment in order to give the best possible care to their patients. Well-trained biomedical technicians who can keep keep equipment running properly are a vital resource to any hospital and can sometimes be the difference between life and death. Recently 6 Malagasy trainees completed months of biomedical training thanks to a partnership between Mercy Ships and Medical Aid International. Trainees not only received academic and hands-on instruction but they were also taught how to teach others to continue to grow their ranks and improve the healthcare in Madagascar.
Medical Aid International Instructor Sean Ryder shares, “They have a great start. They have the tools, the equipment and the knowledge. That knowledge needs to be grown and they can do that themselves through experience of working with the equipment. If they have the opportunity from their management they they will grow into an amazing center probably nothing like they have in mainland Africa let alone an island off of Africa. They have the best possible start now. This hospital and those around can see what a difference it makes, grasp the opportunity and continue driving it forward.”
Please join us in praying
- for Haingo and the others in the Infant Feeding Program
- that this BioMed training will have a long lasting impact on the nation of Madagascar
- for continued strength and courage for every crew member of the Africa Mercy