SHF is in regular contact with the community, and strongly believes that its success is entirely dependent on the participation of the local community. Regular visits to the local community is an ongoing program at SHF.
Village Development Program
By educating women and children and teaching them about health education and hygiene practices, SHF hopes to improve the social and physical environments of the rural communities where we work. Most homes do not have toilet facilities; nearly everyone in rural communities in Nigeria goes to the fields and most times by the side of their homes to relieve themselves. Modesty forces women urinate or defecate in the fields before sunrise or to hold it until after the sun sets. In order to restore dignity of women and tackle the issue of sanitation in these communities, SHF has decided to construct toilets in schools, markets, public areas e.t.c.
We regularly visit rural communities where we embark upon projects to evaluate the impact assessment of maternal and child health, hygiene education taught to them and the sanitary conditions thus far since programme closure and to also help build a relationship with the community. Regular meetings are held with the district heads, CBOs, local and religious leaders to help emphasize the importance of maternal and child health, hygiene education for the communities with special emphasis placed on women and children in such very rural communities.
Through this village interaction, SHF has been able to positively motivate community members about the need for good hygiene and sanitary practices. The hope is to develop a clean environment for reaping developmental dividends as well as to work as an entry point for other rural development activities like health initiatives. This effort has succeeded in bringing SHF closer to the community and especially to women and children.
Clean Water for schools
We have recently started programs on educating pupils in schools in urban communities on the need to wash their hands after the use of toilets, after playing, before and after eating with emphasis now on COVID 19 pandemic e.t.c. Over 897 pupils in schools have benefited from these programs. Our next step for the last half of the year is to ensure our schools become WASH Friendly schools through trainings that we will start in the third quarter of the year.
In order to end poverty in rural communities amongst women farmers we have embarked upon basic entrepreneurial skills development, processing of farm produce and organic sustainable poultry production. Over 60 start up and existing farmers have benefited from our programmes. We intend to train 600 more women and youths by the end of first quarter of the year.
Saving Lives at Birth
Maternal mortality in Northern Nigeria has been on the increase with mothers losing their lives during childbirth and most cases the baby does not survive. For our mothers in rural communities we started a program where they are trained on the right nutrition to take pre, during and post natal, we also train traditional birth attendants on safe delivery practices and at what point to refer to the doctor because research has shown that most of our would be mothers attend ante - natal clinics but revert back to the TBAs for delivery.
We have thus far trained over 20 TBAs and 10 Community Health Workers in two local governing councils in Kano, Nigeria.