Namibia: Ministry of Health And Social Services promote Health Assistant

Date: August 23, 2018
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As a health assistant in my small village (Berseba), i have learned that health and social welfare enlistment, capacity building and networking with different line Ministries and organisations is of great empowerment and upliftment. These program which has been initiated by the Namibian Ministry Of Health And Social Services focuses on home based health education provision to bring health and social service closer to the people, especially for pregnant women who are taught on antenatal care in order to abolish neonatal deaths.

Key objectives of this particular project is to provide health education and promote home based care and palliative care. To bring about change and increase in maternal and neonatal health. To ensure correct and sufficient use of pension grants. Help to link communities with relevant stakeholders and resources. Bring about health education promotion on the importance of HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis treatment adherence and completion. Promotion of assistance in acquiring equipment for persons living with disabilities. To promote provision of basic first aid medical care.

The main activities are:

  • To give health education to households and communities on different aspects of health and social welfare.
  • focus on monitoring and evaluation of elderly abuse which is mostly triggered by the ‘pension grant’, child behaviour assessment is to link both child and parent.
  • Necessary services for guidance in possible child interest for career guidance.

The use observation as an evaluation tool to measure the impact of the 50/50 campaign. Looking at the way in which Gender links Namibia has empowered woman in my community as trained entrepreneurs and also to speak out against Gender based violence has paved way for me as an Health assistant towards a holistic approach and is minimizing gender based violence in my village. Liaising with some members of the representatives in my village, by sharing information and experiences i have amble evidence that women are being empowered on a reasonable phase.

The challenges faced by this project is financing in implementation of youth accommodating programs and also the fact that certain community members does not understand the aim of the program and refuse in cooperation thereof. I continue with the cooperative members of society and do community awareness educative sessions in order to enroll those who does not cooperate.

These program has empowered women through capacitating them with information and strengthening of their knowledge base as from an individual level to a community level. Women now has the skills to understand.

‘Money is a basic necessity to have a livelihood, basic needs like food, clothing and water. having said that society/men should know that women can live above money. No women need not to feel small, intimidated or degraded by not having money, because money makes things possible it in itself is not everything”. R. Smith at the National event on Drug and substance abuse 17 July 2016, Berseba.

Men has changed dominance towards women, came to terms of understanding that they are equals lawfully. Men became supportive in terms of male involvement during pregnancies, understanding and sharing their roles as fathers and partners. Male approach towards “whistle blowing” by female abusers is increasing lately.. Men become supportive in terms of developmental approach towards the importance of education of their children etc.

“Now i understand, why my father was extra cautious with my mum during her pregnancy” A 20 year old on the day of My future my choice drama play at the local school. thought of a pregnancy as a permanent inability or a disability was removed from some women and woe in man that they need to take responsibility of their own sexual actions.

There has been a reasonable decrease in domestic violence, elderly abuse and change is societal perception on LGBTI’S. Practical changes that has taken place on household level is not qualitative but rather quantitative. Through capacity enhancement via dissemination of information by education individuals, groups and communities. We have reached a half of our communities, by household visits and information sharing. Gender roles in households are being understood and practiced accordingly.

Community knows who to consult in areas of home based care and health and social welfare related matters. Members of the community is now well aware of ‘whistle blowing’ on health social welfare and related matters thus gender inequalities and gender based as well as sexual violence is being out-rooted slowly but surely. Upon intervention of these program some women who was married years ago and left with no benefits of identity has gained courage, identity and is also enjoying their human rights as constituted. Evidence has that community intervention programs at large are needed to out rood ill practices such as incest and gender role misconceptions. The abuse of state grants though the excessive use of alcohol has also deteriorated.

Huge change has taken place in my community in terms of people knowing what outcomes their actions may have. pensioners who has misused their grants has change and minimized alcohol consumption and took ownership. Some women who is receiving the vulnerable grant from the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare has also changed by understanding the aim of the grant and has changed from their irresponsible behaviour. the health and social welfare education promotions entails a bit of legal education on protection orders, human rights measures etc, thus influence on the community at large has a great impact on our community.

Monthly health education promotion activities are done on alcohol and substance use. For people living with HIV/AIDS we have established support groups to help them refrain from ‘loss in treatment and indulge in risky sexual behaviours. Every month on pension pay points we promote healthy diets and also the risks involved in substance use. At the local school we do teachings on Saying yes saying no, family planning methods and delayed sexual practice. Liaising with different community based organisations such as Ombetja Yehinga a youth organisation we educate learners through choreographic dancing and role plays on irresponsible sexual behaviour and the consequences thereof. These are being applied according to a monthly activity schedule and by networking with relevant stakeholders in all respective areas.

These program is guided by constitution and aims at bettering the lives of fellow Namibians, thus well sustained by the Namibian government. Even the programs that we incorporate links our clients with the necessary services and resources. Therefore we are seen and regarded as vital structure within the set-up of our ministerial structures.

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