On June 3rd 2010 we received this mail from Madagascar from Maurizio Crespi by the Mission of Marovoay, (children’s names are fancy ones):
Marovoay, June 3rd 2010 My dear friends, Who is today the “Herod” that makes children suffer? Florine, 8 months old, weighs only 4 kg. Her mother died in birth, her father is unknown. Her grandmother is taking care of her but she hasn’t got the necessary money to buy powdered milk and she is giving her a type that’s inadaquate and medicines cost too much, that’s why Florine is sick and can’t grow up. (Florine, 8 months old, weighs 4 kg). While they were tyling the rooms for the pregnant women in the new maternity, the midwife showed us Florine, “a social case”, she told us. Now, we’ll take care of her together with her grandmother. She’ll receive powdered milk, medicines and food. ************************ On June 5th, the midwife came into the new maternity saying that Florine had died yesterday night. What a sadness!!!.The massacre of the Innocents still continues. From a report of the Unicef a million and a half children die in the Third World every year, due to malnutrition. Maurizio
It’s useless saying how much this mail hit us and prompted us to do more and hurry up to end the Maternity Ward. To guarantee even a minimum of hygiene can make the difference between a happy child-birth and that of an orphan with all its consenquences.
Another mail, this time very positive, has become the charter of this new initiative (we want to inform you about everything).
Marovoay, December 20th My dearest friends, we want to give you a good news, look at the pictures of this baby in the enclosures: he’s always the same! Since August, a new project has started at the Mission of the Barefoot Carmelitan Fathers of Marovoay: Children’s Nutritional Help. Everything has begun with Florine’s case. Do you remember it? Two year old, 4 kg, died at 8 months due to malnutrition. A tragedy. Her picture had been seen by some volunteers who had brought to the mission biscuits, clothes, feeding bottles and homogenized food. We, then, bought the powdered milk. However, without a real intention the project has started: Children’s Nutritional Help. We are following about 30 cases. Among these, there is Augustin, an about 7 month year old baby, now he weighs 5 kg, when his mother had come to the mission in October, he was 5 months old and weighed only 3, 650 kg: he was sick and very under weight. We immediately sent him to the hospital of Mahajanga. His mother returned to the dispensary of Ambonomavo, after a week, as Augustin had been discharged from hospital. We have given his mother the necessary milk for a month, together with the homogenized food and the biscuits. Augustin lives at Madirolavo, a very far village from Marovoay. One can only reach it by the ferry that goes down the river Betsiboka. A month later his mother hadn’t come for the check up and we were very worried beingafraid that he could have died as Florine or that he was very ill. But a few days later Augustin’s elder brother came to the mission saying that their mother hadn’t come for the check up because she was afraid of facing the long trip and besides she feared the raining season. However, his brother was ok but food had ended. We gave him a can of powdered milk and told him that it was necessary that they would bring the baby for the check up, otherwise they wouldn’t have received any other aid. On Deccember 13th, here are Augustin and his mother: we couldn’t believe what was before our eyes, another child. You can imagine our joy. We want to share this joy with you and thank God. The causes of malnutrition are several: Mother’s death during labour Baby born premature Low weight at birth Poverty of the family Twins (in these poor countries twins are always at risk due to lack of milk for both and impossibility to buy powdered milk due to its costs, even for richer families). We let the families that live close to Marovoay come every week to the Mission for a check up and in this way they receive a can of powdered milk, homogenized food and biscuits. We also weigh the babies, write a medical record according to age-weight. There are 3 bands: Red, very severe malnutrition Yellow, malnutrition Green, normal weight. The aim of the project is to bring all children in the green section. On Saturdays we teach mothers or who else takes care of the babies how to prepare the babies’ food. If the baby at the check up is sick, we pay the medicines for the families who are poor and if they live too far, we also pay a round-trip by taxi to avoid that they come to the Mission under the hot sun on foot. Unfortunately not all children are successful as Augustin. We ask for prayers for the others. With these pictures along with hope that Augustin can live a normal life now, we wish you a happy New Year. A hug from Maurizio and Father Bruno
The Project in Concrete:
The project in concrete regards furnishing powdered milk to malnourished children (expense: about 20 euros a month), biscuits, homogenized food and medicines (about 10 euros) till the baby reaches a regular weight. That’s why even richer Malagasy families can’t permit themselves such an expense…
The children followed to this date are more than 50. So many situations of poverty. Pitiful this photo of these two twins!.
Twin- stroller… Fidelis and Larissa, born in the medical dispensary of Ambovomavo, on December 6th 2010. Very low weight at birth: the former 2kg, the latter 2,500kg: severe malnutrition. At 4 months, Larissa weighs 5,250 kg and Fidelis 6,500 kg.
We won’t add more. Who wants, can freely give a subscription to the Nutrition Fund, specifying this reason (Nutrition Fund) of the deposit in this account by informing us, the extremes are: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will give you news by mail or by post about this project of which we’ll send an annual report.
This project is shared with the Association “Insieme si può”=“You can together” that is at Belluno, to which belongs also Maurizio Crespi, as a local operator.