What we do to improve the health of children is to offer them a better life within the framework of the ultra-peripheral regions.
Ensuring the survival and health of children and women. In Indonesia, children are the most vulnerable group, with the highest disease and mortality risk.
Child survival and development are at the very heart of all actions carried out by Fair Future. Health programs cannot be effective without access to water, primary medical care, and healthy food. This includes maternal, newborn, and child health and vaccination promotion.
Drinking water and good sanitation are essential to prevent and reduce child mortality. We have worked hard on this for years as part of the Water Connections program. A simple health intervention can prevent most deaths of children aged 1 to 4: the leading causes are diarrheal and respiratory diseases, malnutrition and infectious diseases preventable by vaccination.
Although children with chronic conditions – such as heart disease, diabetes, asthma and epilepsy – do not constitute the majority of the cases we encounter in the field, the needs of these children also require attention and treatment, in particular, that they do not receive without the help of local humanitarian organizations like Kawan Baik or Fair Future.
Some simple recommendations should be implemented, and Fair Future is working towards this!
First, there is a need to maintain regular preventive and curative childcare services. Within the framework of state management, part of the human, material and strategic resources that usually exist for these prevention programs have been reduced due to budgetary constraints. The consequences are already visible. For example, Fair Future sees outbreaks of various diseases from children who have not been vaccinated or poverty-related diseases on the rise.
These politico-economic problems significantly impact the number of diagnoses (for example, diagnosis of malaria and severe dengue fever), which is increasing in the regions where we operate.
Secondly, we must develop new socio-medical approaches and implement innovative and original practices in the villages. For example, nutrition programs, water supply, the creation of community gardens and the development of local resources to increase the purchasing power of rural communities.
Finally, we must continue defending children’s rights to have a healthy, harmonious life and, of course, a future.
Regardless of the negative impact the pandemic has had and will have on children in the years to come, have there been any positive externalities in the Foundation’s projects on the ground?
Community health activities have become a key element in the fight against epidemics and diseases. This reminds us of the effectiveness of this system that we have been developing since 2008. This encourages us to continue to develop these community care programs even more and integrate them into the awareness strategies established by our teams in rural areas.
The sometimes extraordinary situations we experience on the ground confirm that our medical and logistical teams must be flexible and innovative to provide adaptable, social, medical or technical support that is adapted and as adequate as possible to people here.
What difficulties do we encounter in the field but also in the hospitals of the ultra-peripheral and rural regions related to the health care provided to children?
Lack of nutrition plays a terrible impact on the physical development of the child. As the parents no longer have any income, the condition of the children has deteriorated dramatically, and the food budget is severely impacted.
Pregnant women – who absolutely must be mentioned – are struck by the lack of medical care, healthy food and clean water during their pregnancy. We observe that many young pregnant women are proportionally more affected by endemic diseases than others. Without classifying them as “vulnerable people”, their condition requires a healthy diet, care and good hygiene. Requirements which are not met far from there, for example, in the east of Indonesia.