AMHI was incorporated in June 2007 as a Texas based non-profit whose mission is to work towards improved maternal and child health in Malawi by spreading the word at home and funding our sister non-profit in Malawi. Chimwemwe mu’bereki (Joyful Motherhood)* is the Malawian sister organization founded to carry out the work in Malawi. Our primary activities include providing home-based follow-up care to high risk postpartum moms and infants. Our work is based on referrals from Bwaila Hospital in Lilongwe.
What we do
1. Home based nursing care to high risk infants. Infants who do not have access to breastmilk are enrolled by nurses in the newborn nursery at Bwaila Hospital. The majority are infants whose mothers died in childbirth, or infants whose mothers are critically ill during the perinatal period and are unable to breastfeed. Multiples (most frequently triplets) born to women whose meager resources make it difficult to support the growth of healthy children are also enrolled. Nurses at Bwaila care for these babies during their hospital stays and instruct the guardians in formula preparation. At the time of discharge, a physical address is taken so the nurse from CU may visit the family within 72 hours. The CU nurse supplies the guardians with formula as needed and conducts regular home visits to closely monitor the growth and health of the children. She also instructs the family in age related nutritional needs and food preparation. When crises within the family environment threaten the child’s health, the CU nurse and family work together to find appropriate solutions. Currently, CU is following 112 infants. Our goal is to follow all infant orphans and high risk babies born at Bwaila up to five years of age, including: premature infants, infants with disabilities, triplets, and infants whose mothers are critically ill at the time of birth.
2. Home based nursing care to high risk women after birth. CU reaches out to mothers once they have experienced a health crises. Every month several women in Lilongwe are hospitalized for extended periods due to complications following childbirth. When they are finally discharged from the hospital the struggle to regain their health and to maintain the health of their children does not end. Most of them no longer have a supply of breast milk many of them are not able to resume their responsibilities of caring for their children due to their continued convalescence. CU identifies these women during their hospitalization, visits their homes, to assess the needs of their children, works with their communities to provide needed support.