Andree Louvierre is one of our dedicated volunteers serving as a nurse in Trujillo, Peru. In the story below she reflects on a special relationship she has formed with a CMMB Promatora (community health worker)!
In case you don’t know, CMMB Community Health Workers are invaluable health leaders (relatives, friends, and neighbors) who serve in their own communities and are dedicated to helping take care of vulnerable families. They are women and men who have faced the challenges of extreme poverty. In an effort to improve their own lives and the lives of their communities, they take the initiative to become trained health workers to help others live healthier and more dignified lives.
Community health workers are trained to recognize and overcome adversity for their communities by providing vital care, leading programs to empower mothers and women, providing prenatal and postnatal services, and organizing community nutrition and economic empowerment training.
When I first arrived in Trujillo, Diana was nearing the end of her second pregnancy. The first week I got here she attended our meetings, welcomed us into her home, and continued to fulfill all of her duties as a community health worker. That same week, she gave birth to her baby boy (and my newest little friend) Dillon! And just five days later, she jumped right back into work, attending a project event with baby boy in her arms!
It has been fun to see how much he has grown — he is a good measure for my time here too! It has also been incredible to see how having a new baby while being a new promatora has not set Diana back!
In Peru, promatoras are required to support 25 children and three pregnant moms with health support, but Diana now has 39 children in the project!
Baby Dillion and big brother, Diajero, keeping an eye on him!
Diana is originally from Huanchaco. She has her technical degree in nursing, but only practiced for six months after receiving her degree, because she and her husband agreed it would be better for their family if she stayed at home with their children.
She enjoys getting to work with CMMB, because it allows her to use the skills and knowledge she gained from her studies, while still being able to take care of her young family.
Diana is married to a mechanic who works 15 days a month away from home, returning home for seven days at a time. He always supports her in her work and even goes with her to home visits at night. She said they are a team and it is evident!
This last week Jessica
(a fellow volunteer) and I accompanied Diana on her first “consejerias” — meetings with moms at their homes to discuss topics they are struggling with or need more information on about their children. She was a little bit nervous during her first one, but after talking through what she felt went well and how she felt she could be less anxious, she did an excellent job explaining breastfeeding, alimentation, and foods rich in iron to the moms she supports. I am excited to witness her grow in this aspect! Both of her boys, two important players on the team, joined us for the day.
The team – (from left to right) Jessica, Diana, Diajero, Andree and baby Dillion in the stroller!
Before school and after school, Diajero helps his mom sell food and other small items. Their family stays busy and everyone does their part to make life more enriching! He is so helpful and loves CMMB!
It has been such a blessing to grow in friendship with this family and it is always a breath of fresh air when we get to go to their home! Just this last week, Jessica and I gave our first presentations about diarrhea in Spanish! Beforehand, we walked with Diana around the neighborhood to invite moms to the presentation and it was evident that she has a beautiful relationship with them.
Diajero knocked on the doors and mom did the talking with Dillon in her arms. The women that attended the educational session were engaged and it was a lot of fun!
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