Jesi Paulo, member of a Concern cooking club

Jesi Paulo, member of a Concern cooking club

Jesi and her husband own livestock and grow crops. So it was surprising their 27 month-old daughter Sara was still malnourished and underweight.

Before attending the cooking club, the family mainly consumed “Nsima” and vegetable relish which is a monotonous cereal based diet that lacks all nutrients necessary for the proper growth of a child. 

In the cooking club, Mrs Paulo learnt the importance of optimal breastfeeding, the “multi mix” principle of foods, child care, appropriate hygiene practices, caring for sick children and issues relating to HIV and AIDS.

Mrs Paulo says “I have learnt so much since I joined this programme. I feel like I can now qualify to be a health worker. Before Sara was enrolled in the programme she used to get sick very often, now she is healthy I am so happy, I will practice all the things that I was taught at the hearth sessions. Sara’s father is also very happy that Sara is no longer sick.  Now that I know you can mix so many different types of food while cooking I will always make sure that I remain some of my produce for the family before I sell.”

Sara weighed nine kg the day she was enrolled to the programme, and after 12 days this had risen to 9.3 kg. Follow up sessions by volunteer mothers have shown that Mrs Jesi is putting the knowledge that she has gained into practice. Mrs. Jesi has also been teaching her friends, who did not attend the sessions, new tips that she learnt.    

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