Monday, October 13, 2014

Nutrition Mornings!

By Emma Gilbert with photos by Carmen Benitez

My day started out a little earlier than usual—around 6:30am. I had my first nutrition meeting scheduled so I needed to be at the school by 7:30. After loading the bus full of supplies and 11 people, we headed out to Buena Vista to the midwifery clinic where we would set up for nutrition. 

Upon arrival, we quickly set up and started playing with the babies on the play mats. The classical music was an awesome touch, and Carmen Rosa explained to the large group of moms how important is for their babies to have auditory and visual stimulation.

After wrangling a few kids who were trying to break free out the front door or up the staircase, I gave a presentation on the dangers of lead poisoning with Elizabeth and Brianna, current Pop Wuj students. The moms were a little distracted with so many babies in the room, but they paid attention and seemed to understand how dangerous lead can be. 

During my research for the presentation, I was shocked to learn that some paint brands here still contain lead! Through the presentation we hoped to give the women ways to minimize the risk, for example by cleaning the walls and floors with a damp cloth.

The screaming began when the measuring and weighing started, and it was total chaos. At that point I retreated to the hall to help Elizabeth distribute the vitamins, Nutributter, and other items for the women. While we waited for the women to come through, we entertained one of the older boys, who had come along with his infant brother, by playing a variation of soccer and handball in the hallway. Even though he only knew about 10 words in Spanish, we got some laughs out of him which was pretty fun.

After we had finished distributing the vitamins and Nutributter to the women, we quickly packed up and headed home, returning to Pop Wuj around 1pm. It was a tiring morning, but one of the most fun days I’ve had on a project site!

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