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SUPPORTING NEW BORN CARE:

MSG Oecusse monitoringfood for children

 

While breastfeeding is common in Timor-Leste, traditional practices mean that the safety and well-being of both mother and child are often put at risk. Traditions include discarding colostrums as 'dirty milk' when it is the essential source of antibodies and protection against infection for the newborn. Other practices include giving honey and water or sugar tea to the baby to prompt feeding, exposing the baby to dirty water and a risk of diarrhea. Too often women also introduce rice porridge into the diet after only a few months, placing strain on the baby's digestive system. Many communities continue to only feed their children rice porridge for the first year of life, depriving the child of important nutrients needed for growth and development.

 

SUPPORTING NEW BORN CARE: PROMOTING BREASTFEEDING

The main objective of the program is to support breastfeeding and minimize associated problems that might deter women from continuing to feed their babies. Hospital Liaison Officers are employed through the Dili National Hospital and three referral hospitals in Oecusse, Baucau and Maubisse. They have the important roles of supporting the initiation of breastfeeding, problem solving with mothers as well as providing early intervention for premature and underweight babies by educating mothers on cup feeding using breast milk as well as Kangaroo Mother Care. It is showing that there were 16,796 people include pregnant mothers, breastfeed mother and their families increased their awareness on the importance of exclusive breastfeeding no post -natal care. Another result was there 3,777 babies that assisted and practice skin to skin contact initiative.

Members of the Mother Support Group/Suku Hadomi Inan no Oan (MSG/SHIO) program has provided counseling on 6-month exclusive breastfeeding to women in their communities and nearby health post. Mothers reported that exclusive breastfeeding are practicable and sustain if there are wide support from the families, husbands and neighbors.

 

nutritious meals for children