Thursday, 22 October 2015

A Malnutrition Crisis in NTT

Lukas faces an uncertain future. ©RayendraThayeb/ACF

Meet Lukas. The two-year-old from Oebola Dalam village in NTT struggles to play, walk and sometimes even stand up. He is very weak and noticeably thin.

A visiting health worker recently found the circumference of Lukas’ arm to be a mere 10.8cm – confirming that he suffers from “severe acute malnutrition.” This means Lukas is highly vulnerable to disease, and even death.

Lukas’ father explains the economic condition of his family: “We rely on growing and selling produce from a small garden. It gives us an income of about IDR 200,000 each month (approx. USD 16),” he says. “So I can only provide two meals a day for my family.”

Monday, 19 October 2015

Mobile phones saving lives

Midwife Maena Nhur Desita administers a vaccine ©UNICEF Indonesia/2015

Kedoya Utara is one of the poorer neighborhoods in Jakarta. Sitting between megamalls and skyscrapers, this area struggles with makeshift living conditions, polluted waterways and unreliable electricity.

There is one subject of particular concern in Kedoya Utara – immunization rates among children are very low. This puts them at the risk of contracting life-threatening diseases such as measles and diphtheria.

“There is an equity gap in Jakarta and around Indonesia – children from poor families, especially those in slum areas, are not reached regularly for their full vaccination doses,” UNICEF Indonesia Health Specialist Dr. Kenny Peetosutan says.