With 3 feeding programs to support, my goal was to meet/plan/budget/shop for one site during each week of our 3 week visit in early 2017. The focus for week 1 was the Nutrition Center at Kongo-Logre Clinic. Babies and toddlers identified as malnourished during clinic visits are referred for assessment, home visits, and feeding at the nutrition center. In many malnutrition cases, babies are not able to adequately breastfeed. For instance, death or serious illness of the mother. Quite a few cases are twins where the mother’s milk supply is not able to meet the demand of 2 babies. In northern Ghana where food supply is just enough for subsistence, adequately nourished children most often breastfeed for 2 years
The keystone of the clinic program is for mothers, grandmothers, or other caretakers to bring identified children and their small sibilings to the clinic on weekdays for breakfast, lunch, bathing, immunizations, and other medical care. The clients do all food preparation from taking grains to the grinding mill, drying the resulting flours, cooking (over a wood fire), and cleaning up. Local foods are used exclusively, with a focus on “weanimix” porridge (roasted and ground maize, soybeans, groundnuts) for the 6-12 month olds. The shopping list: 600 pounds rice, 400 pounds white beans, 300 pounds groundnuts, 600 pounds maize, 400 pounds soy beans, 400 pounds millet, large basin dried herrings, large bag dried okra, 5 buckets tomatoes, large bag dried peppers, 50 liters raw palm oil (high in Vitamin A), 25 liters cooking oil, 100 balls dowa dowa (a seed used for seasoning), salt, 2 buckets onions, 4 carts of firewood. The goal is to feed 30 children for at least 3 months. The food cost was $1,500.
A mother carries 125 pounds of beans into the nutrition center for storage.
The food stores at the nutrition center, each bag contains 100-125 pounds of grains, nuts, or beans.