“My partner, Sipho, and I had our daughter, Lwazi, in 1983. One morning I woke up and Sipho was gone, I never saw him again. Mbali, my eldest daughter had fallen pregnant in Grade 12 and dropped out of school. She was unemployed with a second child on the way and her boyfriend didn’t show any interest in marrying her. One day she asked me to look after the children while she went to look for work but she never came back.”
Many months went by and Mbali returned home to her mother with another baby boy. Although happy to see her, Mrs. Dlamini noticed that her daughter was very ill. She decided they were all going to the clinic to get tested and sadly some of them tested positive. Mbali was very weak so they kept her back in the hospital. Mrs. Dlamini didn’t realise that it was the last time she would see her daughter alive.
As if a prayer had been answered, she was visited by a fieldworker from Thandanani Children’s Foundation. The Fieldworker explained to her how to look after her own health and that of her family. She visited often to see how everyone was and to make sure that they were taking their medicine. Special food was given to the family to boost their immune systems and they were introduced to a support group.
“Watching the children now, so happy and healthy, makes me happy.” Said Mrs. Dlamini.
As part of our Family Strengthening Program, we provide health education, testing and treatment support to families we work with. By providing these services we are able to monitor the health of the children and other family members and facilitate appropriate and timely responses to any health concerns. Even when they are no major health concerns, we proactively engage households around health issues to maximise prevention and encourage early identification and appropriate treatment. In this way, our health outreach services strengthen the family’s ability to prevent and respond to any health concerns.