Regional conflict and a worsening economy in South Kordofan State in Sudan has had a significant impact on the health of the local community. Food shortages have affected millions of families, with young children under 5 years old especially at risk of being malnourished. Habila is one community in South Kordofan with a considerable number of cases of child malnutrition.
Two-year-old Montasir had been unwell when his mother, Ragaa, took him to Habila Health Facility. There her worst fear was confirmed – he was diagnosed with Severe Acute Malnutrition. After further tests, Montasir was transferred to the Outpatient Therapeutic Feeding Programme (OTP). His case was critical and Montasir showed no appetite.
When his condition failed to improve, he was then referred to a Stabilisation Centre (SC) managed by GOAL. To help reduce child mortality in Sudan, GOAL teams, supported by EU Humanitarian Aid, are implementing a multi-sector lifesaving response for conflict-affected communities like Habila.
Urgent Need of Care
Upon admission, Montasir weighed 6.4kg and his mid-upper arm circumference (MUAC) was 10.2 cm, below the required measurement of 11.5 cm. He was put on an emergency plan to provide essential care and the necessary follow up to ensure his complete recovery from malnutrition.
Within a week, Montasir’s health began to improve. His appetite grew, his weight increased to 7.2kg and his MUAC went up to 10.5 cm. While still below the required standard MUAC measurement, Montasir was making steady progress. His case was so serious that he would go on to stay in the Stabilisation Centre for 45 days.
His mother Ragaa was relieved to see his condition improve.
“Soon after admitting my baby boy to GOAL’s centre, I noticed changes in his health. He finally started eating the nutritious food given to him by the health worker and gained weight,” said Ragaa.
By the end of his 45-day-admission, Montasir’s weight had further increased to 8.6kg and his MUAC was 12.7cm, allowing him to be discharged as healthy.
Ragaa was delighted to see her boy now ready to grow up, healthy and happy.
“I thought he would die but GOAL saved my boy’s life,” she says.
After Montasir’s release from care, Ragaa received health and nutrition advice, including food diversity from health workers in the Stabilisation Centre. Grateful for the intervention that saved her son’s life, Ragaa is savouring every moment she spends with Montasir and planning for his future.