The final week of June has been a busy one in Huilloc. Over the past several days, Sacred Valley Health and the Huilloc promotoras (community health workers), Teresa and Santusa, have been busy meeting with community members and spreading health knowledge throughout upper and lower parts of the town.
On Monday the 24th, Teresa and Santusa presented material from their most recent health training to a group of eleven tejedores (weavers) attending a weaving workshop at the Huilloc Tienda Artesanía (artisan shop). While the women’s children played in the background, Teresa and Santusa highlighted important signals of alarm associated with prenatal and neonatal distress. After identifying and explaining symptoms which are cause for concern and should be treated in the health post, the promotoras described features of normal prenatal health and neonatal development. Both promotoras did a fantastic job of captivating their audience, and we are thrilled that they will be available as resources to families in their community that are expecting or welcoming new babies.
The following day (Tuesday), we journeyed back to Huilloc to support the promotoras in a small health campaign at the second community preschool: a tiny, colorful building teetering on what felt like the top of the mountain.
Surrounded by a swarm of 4 year-olds in brightly colored ponchos and faldas (skirts), looking out over snowy mountains and down on the bustling town of Huilloc, we set up three small stations. After collecting height, weight, and cavity count with the help of Santusa, we rotated the children through a hand washing and tippy-tap station, followed by a dental hygiene station led by Teresa. During this campaign we saw 23 children between the ages of three and six, identified 83 cavities, and distributed new toothbrushes and toothpaste to all children. We also gave the teachers a two month supply of vitamins, which they will distribute to the students.
Promotoras in all the communities we serve are planning similar presentations to share their knowledge with community members. This weekend, the Patacancha promotoras will make a presentation to pregnant mothers and their partners, and next week we will hold two health campaigns in Phiry’s school with our Pampallacta promotoras. Stay tuned for more photos and updates as we hit July running!
– Written by Harriet Napier and Erica Gadzik