Last Friday marked the fifth training session for our “P2” promotoras, the community health workers who started their training with us in September 2013. (Our first group – P1’s – started in September 2012.) Friday’s topic was signs of alarm – conditions that should prompt a promotora to accompany her patient to the nearest posta (government clinic) right away.
At the start of the day, the promotoras learned about what germs are, what they do, and how they can spread. The promotoras also received and learned to use thermometers, so that they will be able to better identify and monitor patients with fever. They studied signs of alarm for diarrhea, vomiting, and cough. By “signs of alarm,” we mean the signs that each of these conditions has reached a point where the patient should be accompanied to the clinic right away. Promotoras also learned how to make oral rehydration solution, and how to recognize symptoms of pneumonia and tuberculosis. They learned to identify signs of malnutrition in children beyond just visible underweight, and received charts indicating how often children and pregnant women should receive check-ups by health care professionals. Sacred Valley Health/ Ayni Wasi holds all promotora training sessions at two government clinics in our catchment area. Being trained at one of these clinics enables our promotoras to develop familiarity and comfort with the clinic and its staff, and this increases the likelihood that promotoras will refer and accompany patients to the clinic whenever necessary.
After taking the promotoras through the day’s topics, the Community Coordinators set up review stations so that each promotora had the opportunity to go around and revisit all of the topics covered in the lesson.
Overall, we had a successful training session, and these trainings only get better with time as staff members become adept at addressing issues that arise. First, to solve the problem of promotora attention during long training days, we included fun stretch breaks at regular intervals.
Second, to address potential distractions that can arise from children attending trainings, we created a daycare, affectionately known as “Darragh Daycare” thanks to our awesome media coordinator Darragh who entertained the kids while their mothers were learning.
As we continue to grow and make improvements to our program, we are happy to find ways to accommodate the promotoras’ learning needs.
Stay tuned for more about our trainings!
– Ayo (M&E Coordinator)