Congo: 5,400 children living, breathing, walking around
I’m working on a health proposal today; pulling together information from our work, reports, the internet, the news.
Malnutrition rates have broken the emergency threshold. Not far from here the number of children who die before they are five is at one and half times the emergency level, and almost three times the average for sub-saharan Africa.
But, despite all this, I’m feeling really optimistic. I genuinely think this situation can be changed. Nothing here feels like a basket case, a black hole. It feels like a place stuffed with potential and possibility, just waiting for a chance to shine.
Our programme in the Masisi district has already doubled the number of people who can get health care when they need it.
Around 6,000 children have been treated for severe acute malnutrition – the level of malnutrition where the child will die unless they’re given immediate emergency medical treatment (drips, intravenous antibiotics, oxygen…) as their bodies have shut down.
We’ve had a 90% cure rate. Which means there are around 5,400 kids walking around today who would be dead if we weren’t here. How good is that?
It’s why I’m working on a Sunday night, on my own, in a place where I can’t speak the language and only know two people, and it’s why I’m very happy doing it.
We’re already saving lives here, we can save a load more. That’s a great atmosphere to be working in.