The East African Center for the Empowerment of Women and Children offers both education and health programming to the Takaungu village sub-location. Our health programs include a Community Health Unit and extensive health education classes on a diverse range of topics for students and adults.
Our health staff is made up of three committed community members who work full time at our health offices teaching health education, visiting community groups, holding growth monitoring events and theme days around the village, and watching over our income-generating chicken rearing project. We hope to sell our fully grown chickens to raise money for our health work in 2013.
The Takaungu Community Unit is a government community health worker group founded by the EAC and supported by the government clinic and the EAC staff. In 2012, the Community Unit applied for a grant from the National AIDS Control Council (NACC) for door-to-door HIV/AIDS testing in the community. The EAC assisted them in finishing the grant application, and helped them with the small funding that they needed to get the grant application into the NACC offices. The Community Unit was awarded the grant and has already completed half of the HIV testing in the community with the other half to be finished in 2013.
The Stay Alive health program is taught to Class 4 students at 6 local schools. In addition to HIV/AIDS prevention education and original Stay Alive curriculum, we have added sections that teach the students life skills they will need to protect themselves from HIV and live a long loving life. The life skills we focus on building include healthy relationships, avoiding peer pressure, and building self-confidence. The curriculum also includes other important health topics like malaria prevention, nutrition and hygiene, and clean water.
Opened in January of 2006, the Vutakaka Maternal and Reproductive Health Clinic provided pre- and post-natal care, immunizations and growth monitoring for children, HIV/AIDS testing, and basic medical care for thousands of individuals.
In 2012, the EAC completed a major transition on the road to sustainability – the Vutakaka Health Clinic was closed and supplies and equipment were donated to a new government clinic opening in Mavueni area. Many of our patients were walking very long distances to reach our clinic from Mavueni. At the same time, the Takaungu Dispensary was improving and expanding.