Our Health Center Program is designed to provide families with a roadmap to better health – and it is working! On average, when a family enrolls in our program they are growing just 1 type of vegetable; by graduation they are growing at least 4 different varieties. Furthermore, these behavioral changes go far beyond direct engagement. Of graduates surveyed, 91% continue to grow high-variety vegetable gardens 1-4 years following program completion.
This year, we provided 3,080 families across 20 health centers with:
We also recently completed a survey of families who graduated from Gasabo District between 2012-2015 with the following results:
- Knowledge gains were sustained, with 84% of caregivers able to name two signs of malnutrition and 76% able to correctly describe a balanced meal
- 83% of households continue to cultivate a home garden with vegetables and legumes, compared to 60% at enrollment and a national average of between 47-63%
- 65% of children maintained an improved growth trajectory two years after graduation
- 50% of children born after the mother graduates from the program are at a healthy height and weight for their age, compared to less than 1% of their siblings who enrolled in our program.
This year our team weighed and measured over 40,000 children for 3,080 spots in our program and expanded our reach to cover 100% of the health centers in Musanze District.
Our program has grown by leaps and bounds over the past six years, expanding from a pilot project in two health centers to an initiative that has been included in the District Plans to Eliminate Malnutrition in both the Gasabo and Musanze Districts. Our impact has also grown beyond the direct work of our Health Center Program. This year we were able to train 900 nurses, nutritionists and health center leaders in our model and our one-pot-one-hour training was distributed to approximately 88,000 Community Health Workers nationwide.
- We are currently working with 20 Partner Health Centers and expect to serve 3,080 families this year, reaching an estimated 10,800 individuals. To put this number in context, when we launched our Health Center Program six years ago (2010) we served 122 families at three Partner Health Centers. We have now served 8,220 families.
- Our staff has grown from 3 to over 125 individuals. Of this team, over 90% are Rwandan and the majority come from the communities we serve
- Our revenues have kept pace with our growth. In FY 2012 we raised $212,714, in FY 2014 we raised $800,498, and in FY 2016 we raised $1,249,702. This fiscal year we expect to continue this trajectory to support the growing number of families in our program.
Antenatal Care (ANC) Program
The most critical time in a child’s life for growth and development is from the moment of conception to their second birthday. GHI recognizes the importance of targeting pregnant women to receive critical health and nutrition education that can improve the health of both the mother and developing child to prevent malnutrition before it can begin.
Our ANC curriculum is designed to improve access to full ANC care while also addressing the factors that can contribute to malnutrition. We cover topics like the importance of ANC visits; how to shop for healthy, affordable foods; how to create a balanced meal; why hygiene and food safety are important to preventing malnutrition; the importance of the timely introduction of breastfeeding and complementary feeding; and postnatal care.
Since we launched the program in August 2016, we have graduated about 2,272 pregnant women from the ANC program.
The percentage of women attending at least one ANC visit increased from 74% to 90% by the time of graduation.
16% of women attended their first ANC visit by the end of the program
After the program, the percentage of women meeting the Minimum Dietary Diversity rose from 42% to 73% and 59% of women were consuming iron rich foods and 94% were consuming vitamin-A rich foods, compared to 33% and 84% respectively, prior to the program.