ENEWSLETTER - March 2015


 

Dispelling Myths to Help Children Thrive in Mozambique

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In the Mute village of Mozambique, 31-year-old Judith Manuel used to believe myths and superstitions that were killing her children. Friends like you made it possible for Food for the Hungry (FH) to begin work in her area of northern Mozambique six years ago.

“Before Food for the Hungry arrived, parents would go to work on their fields,” Judith said. “When they returned home, it was common practice for them to wash their hands and give the dirty water to their children to drink. They believed that the dirty water would make their children strong.”

When generous FH partners like you helped us reach Judith’s remote village, the community had been forgotten. It was a grueling 10-hour drive down some paved roads, but mostly potted dirt paths. Dilapidated mud houses lined the roadway.

Before you helped FH reach Judith’s village, poverty was evident everywhere. More than 40 percent of children under the age of 5 suffered from severe malnutrition. Many farmers practiced traditional agriculture, slashing and burning vegetation and destroying trees to clear their land. Often, there were no crops to show for their labor. Negative and prohibitive beliefs enslaved the people. For example, expecting mothers were not allowed to eat eggs, meat, bananas or papaya. They were restricted from using pit latrines.

Thanks to the discovery of large deposits of gas in the area, the drive to Judith’s village has been transformed. There is now a hive of activity – passenger vehicles, truckloads of goods, and motorcycles rush in both directions. Newly built and renovated homes have replaced the mud homes. The area now features a bank, fuel depot and excellent lodging.

More importantly, the people have also been transformed, thanks to work like you make possible through FH.

For five years, men, women and the youth have learned about agriculture, health, nutrition, water, sanitation and community leadership. Judith leads a group of women who have learned how to better care for their children.

This kind of transformation – the kind that transforms hearts and minds – wouldn’t be possible without you. Thank you for helping FH reach the people of northern Mozambique, and helping their children to go from struggling to thriving.


Left: Women like Judith Manuel are helping children thrive by teaching other mothers what FH
taught her. Right: Thank you for helping children like this to thrive!
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