|Villagers offer home-based care treatment services|
|Monday, 09 July 2012 13:41|
Sunday News CorrespondentMADIGANE villagers in Lower Gweru are actively involved in providing community home based care treatment services for the terminally ill as part of a well-designed motivational system offering therapeutic counselling and emotional support to fellow villagers.
Madigane Village is under Chief Sogwala and the home based care group is staffed by dedicated locals who consist of women and surprisingly a substantive number of men, all who have pledged to assist their community.
During a recent visit to the area by Sunday News, supervisor of the home based group, Mrs Sinikiwe Ncube, said the group provides remedial health support and frequently embarks on hygienic programme related activities to educate the community.
“This is voluntary work, but we wear a uniform when doing our rounds. We receive advice from health workers working at Madigane Clinic. We visit patients twice a week depending on the gravity of the sickness. We work on a zero budget, each member, if they can, is supposed to carry his or her own toiletries for patients or we contribute funds for various items such as detergents and bandages,” she said.
Mrs Ncube said during the conceptulisation of the idea very few members were interested but recently the membership increased because the group has proven to be viable and trusted by the community.
“I am pleased to note our membership increase. At the onset we virtually had no males as they were disinterested but as time passed, they changed their attitude as other women and now we are an active group taking healthcare to various homesteads.
“This should prove we’re community oriented,” she said.
Mrs Emily Kanyuchi said the group educates the community on HIV/Aids, TB and other illnesses explaining how a few segment society still battles with stigma.
“We always carry out educational programmes and tell the community to stop judging other people when they get sick. Sometimes we target the sick because due to certain reasons or circumstances they default on their medication,” she said.
Mr Daniel Moyo said the members divided roles and duties and often met patients who were embarrassed to be bathed by members of the opposite sex, that is why having a joint gender membership helped to make their job easier.
Mr Veil Ndlovu also elaborated on that saying his entire view of responsibility had changed because he realised each individual had a part to play whether man or woman in helping the community.
He said: “Each villager needs social support.When we gather news that a certain family is experiencing hard times we go and assess the situation and offer our services. If the situation is complicated, we advise the family to seek proper medical care. However, the point is we support each other”.
Mr Sharlot Musipuana said although home based care groups were central they had their own fair share of problems.
He said one of the difficulties was the long distance travelled to reach certain homesteads and appealed for sponsors to donate bicycles to make mobility easier.
“Some of us stay on the opposite ends of the hills and we have to move 10 to 20 kilometres depending on the location we will be covering. One other major problem is some homesteads have no water sources as they don’t have any boreholes in sight and we have to carry buckets of water to wash linen or change bandages,” he said.