A-DAY OUTREACH ON FAMILY PLANNING SERVICES (FP) In commemoration of World Population Day at Oje Market, Ibadan

A view of Oje Market on Tuesday 10th July 2018 Photo by @debisibusybeeMedia
NURHI Community mobilizers sensitizing market men & women about the ongoing free family planning service outreach. Photo by @debisibusybeeMedia

At the Oje Market bustling with activities where market women display their wares and goods to sell to customers, the atmosphere was a mixed ambiance of buying and selling noise and drums with dancing.

Something was up at the market on this day. Right at the center of the market close to the “Babaloja” (Chairman of the market) tents were mounted up and chairs arranged to receive beneficiaries of the free family planning services been provided for the market women and anyone who was interested in accessing this service.

As one of the media crew who was present to cover this exciting program I observed that a few women were already sitting waiting patiently as the health workers and FP service providers set things up putting in place products to serve these dear women who keep working hard to make a living and taking care of their family members. Other women hawking bread; food vendors and so on dropped their wares to take advantage of the moment. I knew juicy stories were waiting for me here but most of all it was great seeing these low income earning women get the opportunity to make a decision about their reproductive life.

The slogan for the outreach-

Family Planning is Life Planning: Know About it, Accept it, Access it.

Nigeria currently ranks  number 7 in the world population. In a 2017 report earlier by UN- Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) the country is expected to be the the third most populous nation in the world! Nigeria with a projected population of 187million is expected to grow to about 250million. This is alarming given the nation’s economic indices and GDP growth which is not commesurate to cater for provision of basic amenities and sustainable livelihood for citizens. The government need to plan for the future by putting in place measures to control population explosion that will further impact negatively on our economy.

Meet two of the beneficiaries as they share their FP story and onwhy they showed up at the outreach:

Mrs Idowu and her baby after taking her free injectable family planning method. @debisibusybeeMedia

Mrs. Idowu Olaide – FP Service beneficiary – A tailor 
I am at Oje Market to access the free family planning services been provided here today. I became a user of FP because my older sisters who are also mothers are users of family planning. This encouraged me to also become a user when I began to have my children and It has been three years now since I started using FP. I am on the 3 monthly injectables Family planning method. So today I came for a follow-up visit to have another dose of my FP method. I have enjoyed the method I use. Often I tell other women to also go and access family planning because it has many benefits. It prevents a woman from getting pregnant when she is still nursing a baby

Mrs Saheed after collecting her FP Pills in an interview with Journalists. @debisibusybeeMedia

Mrs. Saheed Suliat 
I became educated about family planning and its benefits through awareness on the radio and then at the clinic nurses and health workers talk to us about it. I have been a user of the Pills family method even before I got married. Today I am here to access free FP services and therefore I was able to get my pills for free here at this outreach in the market
This particular beneficiary had a misconception that FP prevents sexually transmitted diseases. It is important to note that only Condom has a double protection which is preventing unplanned pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases.

Some of the Facilitators of the Outreach share their thoughts :

Mrs. Victoria Segilola -Program Officer ARFH
This outreach is all about bringing the family planning services to market women who find it difficult to leave their business to go family planning to access services. So we have brought the free services to their doorsteps and attending to clients does not take more than 10 minutes and then they can go back to their shops. Team members and mobilizers are all over the market sensitizing the market women and men.

Mrs. Segilola has been an advocate for family planning for over 40 years.

I am happy at the progress we have made in reducing maternal mortality rate according to statistics. This the basis of all efforts at encouraging more women to take on family planning. And it is heartwarming to see that all collaborative efforts have greatly improved peoples uptake of FP.
However, these women need the support of their husband and government. More Funds investment by the government will improve these low earning women to have free access to family planning services.

Mrs. Stella Akinso State Team Lead, NURHI Oyo State
We are here at the Oje Market to let people know that family planning uptake is not by cohesion it is voluntary. Promoting the right of every human being to access FP particularly Women of Reproductive years
Right to information and quality services about family planning that will empower them to make the right decisions
Data shows that there is high knowledge but low acceptance of FP especially with rural and urban-rural women who still need their husband’s permission to take up Family planning services. We are encouraging spousal communication but also want people to know that it is the right of every individual of reproductive age to seek and to access family planning services.

As we celebrate another world population day it is imperative to understand that it is the right of every citizen to make informed choices about planning their lives in order to achieve a more productive life.

In our efforts to combat poverty we must pay attention to our population and be sure that we have enough resources to cater for our growing number.

Organizers:
National Population Commission in collaboration with development partners ( The Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative(NURHI 2); Planned Parenthood Federation of Nigeria (PPFN); Association of Reproductive and Family Health (ARFH); Oyo State Agency for the Control of AIDS (OYSACA); and National Orientation Agency (NOA).

Adebisi Adetunji (C) Founder Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant, Behavioral Change Radio Drama, Communication4Development, Social Media Influencer, Principal Producer (FRCN) 
Catch me on Twitter @DebisiBusybee
Facebook & email – bisimodupe1975@gmail.com

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What You Must Know Before Getting Pregnant #safemotherhood

Media visit to NURHI 72 hour makeover PHCs in Ibadan. Mrs Elegbeleye Atinuke (Senior CHEW) in an FP counseling session with a mother – Mrs Lamidi Rukayat. Media group was graciously allowed to witness the session with client’s permission.

What you know can help you make informed choices. The problem is sometimes we do not have access to the necessary information to help achieve a quality life and improved economic power.

An information shocked I and participants present at a Media Family Planning advocacy Roundtable meeting organized by Development Communications Network(DEVCOMS) supported by The Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative(NURHI). I have always felt that ectopic pregnancies occur only in the fallopian tube but at this meeting, we heard that a woman was reported to have actually carried to term a baby that developed in her abdomen. The facilitator Dr. Tunde Olatunji explained further that the abdomen is that place which houses the womb, stomach, liver, kidney etc for those of us not medically inclined. So rest easy the abdomen is not the same as the stomach where food is digested.

According to medical reports ectopic pregnancies rarely do survive however It was possible for this woman to have her baby grow in her abdomen and termed instead of her womb. Probably early detection and close monitoring by skilled and well trained medical personnel. Imagine if she had delayed going early to register for antenatal care! The ectopic pregnancy growing in her abdomen would not have been discovered on time which could have been fatal for her and the unborn child. You can read up more about Abdominal pregnancy and the threat it poses to  a woman.

It is very important therefore that every woman, expectant or a would be mother be informed about preconception, antenatal and postnatal care available to them.

In lay man’s terms, ectopic pregnancy is when the sperm fertilizes the egg of a woman outside the womb. This means the embryo gets implanted and begins to develop outside the womb. Usually, ectopic pregnancies are flushed out because it is high risk to the health and life of a mother.

According to an article written by the American Pregnancy Association, known risk factors for ectopic pregnancies include:

• Previous abdominal/pelvic surgery
• Several induced abortions
• Pelvic inflammatory disease
• Maternal age of 33 -44 years

Knowledge is like a light bulb in a person’s head which sheds light on an issue. @debisibusybee

A few take away from Dr. Tunde Olatunji’s lecture on Improving Maternal Health

  1.  Preconception care involves providing adequate education about what pregnancy means to a woman’s health. Would be mothers should be encouraged to take care of themselves, eat right and stay healthy. This will prepare their body for the challenges that come with conception
  2. The health of a woman during pregnancy, at birth and postpartum(after delivery), is of crucial importance.
    Register early enough for antenatal care. This will give the pregnant woman to have access to education about what to eat, tests and immunizations required for expectant mothers; need to rest in between births and not have frequent deliveries etc.
    – Deliveries should be carried out by skilled birth attendants and health personnel.
    – Infection if not diagnosed early can make a woman who delivered safely to fall ill. And this can be a threat to her life.
    – Postnatal care provides information about breastfeeding and when to start feeding the child with other types of foods; immunization dozes for newborns; and when it is safe to have another child.

The first 24 hours after delivery critical for mothers and newborns. 2/3 of all maternal deaths occur during the postnatal period. – Dr. Olatunji

3. Grandmas and mothers-in-law to be educated about old practices that can be harmful to the wellbeing of mother and newborn. Example massaging the umbilical cord with a hot cloth heated on a lantern.

4. The burden of maternal mortality is an important input to health decision-making. Skilled health personnel are inadequate in health facilities; where we ought to have 15-17 personnel there are only 5 -6 skilled workers.

The government needs to invest in health care in order to prevent depletion of its populace and reduce productive manpower.

Family Planning services should also be budgeted for as it has been reported that this helps reduce maternal death by 40%

Life is precious and the one who is the vehicle that conveys life should not die while trying to achieve this. Every life counts and matters. – @debisibusybee

Adebisi Adetunji (C) Founder Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant, Behavioral Change Radio Drama, Communication4Development, Social Media Influencer, Principal Producer (FRCN) 
Catch me on Twitter @DebisiBusybee
Facebook & email – bisimodupe1975@gmail.com

Radio Program Series You will Totally Enjoy Listening To: Entertaining, informative & Engaging!

I was part of the team that designed the intriguing and engaging stories by African Radio Drama Association(ARDA) and Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative (NURHI). Stories were designed for three states and I tell you we had so much fun putting it all together. Now the program is set to begin a new quarter this February.

Find the details in this press release below:

“Get It Together” Radio Programs Return:
Weekly Program to Air in Kaduna, Lagos and Oyo States

Abuja — We are back with a brand new season of the “Get It Together” Radio programs Se’rigbo in Lagos, Ireti Eda in Oyo, and Komai Nisan Jifa in Kaduna starting the week of February 12th, 2018.

The radio programs are part of the Get it Together Campaign of the Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative 2 (NURHI 2) which encourages all Nigerians to KNOW the facts about family planning, TALK to their partner, and GO for family planning services.

In the episodes of these popular radio programs — Se’rigbo in Lagos, Ireti Eda in Oyo, and Komai Nisan Jifa in Kaduna — audiences follow the lives of characters and their interesting journeys through everyday life in Nigeria. The shows also give listeners the opportunity to call-in and speak directly with family planning experts, who will answer their questions live on-air. Listeners also have a chance to win weekly prizes of N1,000 recharge cards.

Speaking about the programs, Dr. Mojisola Odeku, NURHI 2 Project Director said, “Listeners are hooked on the programs’ serial dramas and real stories. Fans calling-in to the program to have their questions answered by family planning experts is one of the more popular features.”

Radio Show premiere dates, radio stations, and broadcast times are as follows:

Lagos Se’rigbo :
-Bond 92.9 FM: Mondays 4-5pm
-Radio Lagos 107.5FM: Mondays 4-5pm
Both start on February 12

Oyo Ireti Eda :
-Fresh 105.9FM: Wednesdays 4-5pm (Start date: February 14)
-Amuludun 99.1FM: Mondays 3-4pm (Start Date: February 12)

Kaduna Komai Nisan Jifa :
-Liberty 91.7Fm: Saturdays 4-5pm (Start Date: February 17)
-Nagarta Radio 747Khz: Wednesdays 3-4pm (Start Date: February 14)

Radio listeners can join in the conversation and see what other fans are saying and catch up on previous episodes on Get It Together’s official Facebook page: @getittogetherng

About the Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative 2 (NURHI 2)

The NURHI 2 project uses communication to increase demand for family planning among men and women. It is led by the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (CCP) in partnership with the Center for Communication Programs Nigeria (CCPN).

The Get It Together radio programs build on the success of the previous seasons and the campaign’s 2016 hit song “Get It Together,” featuring Paul ‘P Square’ Okoye and Tiwa Savage. NURHI 2 has also helped establish a network of trained health providers offering friendly and confidential family planning services. NURHI 2 locations can be recognized by the blue, yellow and orange puzzle piece logo with signs that say ‘FP services available here” and the National Family Planning ‘Green Dot logo’.

For more information please visit http://www.nurhitoolkit.org, send an email to cokereafor@nurhi.org or call Chukwuemeka on 0805-334-0599

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

January 8th – 12th, 2018: Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Week in Oyo State

Mothers and Newborns at Akinyele Primary Health Center in Ibadan, Oyo State

The Oyo state government is starting the year in a grand style by paying attention to maternal and child health. A one week long activities which will provide free medical services for mothers, newborn and children in 702 health facilities in various local governments in the state.

Children under five will be given Vitamin A supplement; other services to be provided are malnutrition screening, HIV testing, provision of family planning commodities to help mothers rest in between births, malaria drugs and deworming tablets and more.

The commissioner for health in Oyo State, Dr, Azeez Adeduntan confirms that health officers will visit schools to administer Vitamin A to pupils. What a great way to start another school term as children resume school work this week!!

Encourage mothers around you to take advantage of this free health service…spread the word.
Let’s all join hands together to end maternal and child mortality.

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

Maternal & Child Health : Two Mothers Who Wouldn’t Register for Antenatal Care/Vaccinate Their Children

Once while at Ankor Market in Eruwa, Oyo State with a team on community interaction with mothers about registering for antenatal and immunizing their babies, we came across a few women that surprised us.

One of the women was a young pregnant mother selling stuff in the market. We asked whether she had registered at the hospital for antenatal care and she said she didn’t have the time yet. She travels to the farm to bring goods to sell in the market and was just too busy. It was a thing of concern to my Abiye team(maternal and child health media education team) and I. So here we were in the middle of the market with all the ambiance of bargaining going on attempting to convince this woman to register herself and unborn child at the antenatal clinic. We did our best to educate her on the importance of antenatal care to having a healthy baby and safe delivery.

Moving further down in the market we met a nursing mother with her baby strapped to her back. She was there to buy some foodstuff. In our chat with her, we tried to find out if she had been taking her baby for his immunization doses. This mother responded that she didn’t believe in immunizing her children. To her, it was not necessary and she even feared that it might be harmful to her baby. We were flabbergasted at her “ignorance”. My thought was… “Do people still think like this at this age”? We soon found out that there were others like her in that same market and community.

Again we engaged her in a dialogue to educate her about the importance of immunizing her children to their wellbeing. I enlightened her about the fact that vaccines protect children from childhood diseases that could be fatal. This woman was busy smiling and shaking her head, it didn’t look like she would take our advice and there wasn’t much we could do about it.

Many others like these women whose stories I just Shared really need to be better educated.

It is easy to think that with all the campaign to create awareness about the safety net of immunizing babies and children,  people would take it seriously. Unfortunately, there are still those who have a bias and are not properly informed. Community education is still very important and must continue.

As we mark another world Polio day today 24th October 2017, encourage every mother in your community to go immunize their babies to protect their lives and future. Polio is a crippling disease that is iireversible but can be prevented through immunization.

Encourage expectant mothers to also register for antenatal care where they are likely to have proper education about immunization services for their babies.

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

#SAFE MOTHERHOOD – Do You Know that Parts of a baby Forms 3 weeks after Conception? How to Have a Healthy Baby.

Your baby’s development and growth starts in the womb and not just after birth. Most times we begin to count a child’s age when he/she is born. I’d like to think that the nine months in the womb should be added. Yes, the life of any child begins at conception. It is therefore important that a woman understands that once she gets pregnant everything and anything she does can affect the development of her child.

As early as three weeks after conception occurs a baby’s organs internally and physically begins to form (head, hand, fingers, intestine, heart etc.) So it is very important for a mother to start eating right and taking care of herself right from the time she is aware that another life is growing in her. I would say even before you get pregnant eat right, eat a balanced diet and feed well. Then your body can have enough supply of nutrients, vitamins, minerals needed by you and your baby.

What you eat; how you take care of yourself and health during pregnancy matters.

Foods rich in nutrient to help your baby develop well in the womb:

  • Eat a lot of proteinous foods such as egg, fish, meat, beans, Moimoi, Akara(Bean Cake) – Helps your baby’s brain and muscle development.
    Specifically Beans – contains Zinc an important mineral that helps to give your baby adequate birth weight and cut down the risk of having a pre-term baby.
  • Fruits (Orange, banana, Apple, grapes, Guava, etc.) contain lots of vitamins.
  • Dairy products such as milk, yogurt – This is rich in calcium necessary for the development of your baby’s bones, teeth.
  • Foods rich in fiber such as oatmeal, cereals rich in wheat – This class of food contain vitamins and proteins.
  • Vegetables such as carrot, cabbage, efo tete, ugwu leaf and so much more – These are rich in vitamins and minerals.
  • Water is essential in helping organs of the body to function properly. Water aids digestion, circulation of nutrients in the body and oxygen flow in the body. Therefore water is very important in pregnancy. Take a lot of water in pregnancy.

Most malformation (birth defects) occur when the organs are forming and what can cause this include effects of drugs used without doctor’s prescription or exposure to radiation. 

Beware Alcohol, smoking and taking drugs without a doctor’s prescription can have serious implication on your baby.

Warning Alcohol affects the development and health of a baby in the womb and after birth.

Photo Credit: BBC

Adebisi Adetunji (C)

Breastfeeding #2 – What is your take on Companies/organizations Providing a Baby Creche for Nursing Mothers?

The other day I was having an official chat with my boss and something she said warmed my heart.

Recently a number of our pregnant women in the office just delivered their babies. Four months of maternity leave wrapped up quickly and before you could say “Jack Robinson” they resumed work. A few of these mothers brought their babies to the office with a maid carrying the baby outside in the car, in the parking lot while mummy worked. The mother will dash out every now and then to breastfeed and get back to attending to official matters.

It was mostly a case of wanting to do exclusive Breastfeeding and to achieve this meant they had to bring their babies since there was no baby Creche  anywhere close to the office.

During our chat, this my boss looked out the window and saw a mother rushing to breastfeed her baby in the parking lot and she shared a thought she had been brooding over. She was on a hunt for a container that will be furnished and turned into a baby Creche for our nursing mothers. I felt it was really thoughtful of her. She planned on getting sponsors for this project to make this dream come through as the organization will likely not provide such a service.

My Question

What is your take on companies/organizations providing baby Creche for nursing mothers?

Some people will say it is not cost effective as these mothers are already being paid.. Hmmmn what do you think?

Please share your thoughts.

Baby Creche: A nursery where babies and young children are taken care of while their mum’s work. 

Adebisi Adetunji (C)