Fighting Malaria and Hunger

The longer I am here, the more I realize that we are at the most remote point on earth. Despite a small part of the people aims for things of the developed world such as smart-phones, tablets and internet or a fancy outfit, the majority of people is simply poor. They are missing clean drinking water, cloth, soap and most of all food. Shortly ago a heard the saddest story in the children’s consultation hour. A mother told that she with her child could not come to the hospital earlier as she had no cloth for the kid and had to borrow some from relatives. The people here are fighting against an unbelievable poverty and still try to keep some dignity. The work and support for these people here is will be worth it.”

Kathrin Baumgartner, doctor in the Nuba- mountains.

 

This year’s malaria season hit the people in the Nuba- mountains extremely hard. Our staff there noted much more malaria cases than the years before. Mainly children suffered from the illness. But our staff can be proud to have almost not lost patients.  “Only a few children, who were brought to the hospital to late and a few elderly people, who had less resources to fight the illness did not survive” children’s doctor Baumgartner says.

But the people in the Nuba-mountains not only have to fight malaria: Again there is a food shortage ahead- but this time with special dimensions. Seeding and harvesting in the Nuba-mountains takes place in an annual sequence. The seeding is in spring, than the rain follows and in autumn is harvest. Annually in the middle of the rain season there is a food shortage. In August corn can be harvested, but the most important food Sorghum is ready as late as November only. The loss of the granary area Al Azarag in spring 2016 due to ongoing war, a poor rain season and a continuous inflation contribute to a worsening of the food situation.

As food shortage most heavily hits the children, in our Lwere hospital we take five heavily malnourished children in our feeding program during dry- season, in the month with food shortage from July to October even 10 to 15 children per month.  Mainly children below the age of five suffer from food shortage. They have a much higher risk to die from malaria, respiratory diseases or diarrhea.