July 10, 2024

Cholera: Ikoyi Rotary Club harps on exclusive breastfeeding

Cholera: Ikoyi Rotary Club harps on exclusive breastfeeding

By Olasunkanmi Akoni

The Rotary Club Ikoyi has stressed the need for nursing mothers to Imbibe the culture of exclusive breastfeeding to protect their babies against killer cholera disease.

President of the club, Mr Emmanuel Efuntayo, gave the charge during the presentation of diapers, mosquito nets, and other items to nursing mothers at Iru/Victoria Island Health Centre, Lagos State, on Monday.

The donation by the club was in commemoration of the Rotary Maternal and Child Health month.

Efuntayo said practising exclusive breastfeeding would help babies fight diseases.

He said the Rotary club decided to join the campaign for exclusive breastfeeding because it was a veritable way of preventing diseases,including cholera.

The president noted that there was no better time to advocate or promote breastfeeding and good hygiene than now.

“We know that cholera as an illness has a water and sanitation relationship.

“So we are also advocating that at least every nursing mother should give exclusive breastfeeding in a hygienic manner for their children for at least two years.

“I was breastfed exclusively for more than a year by my mother so exclusive breastfeeding is for good health and disease prevention.

“I believe that exclusive breastfeeding has a way of protecting a child against all manners of diseases ,especially now that we have cholera,” he said.

Efuntayo urged beneficiaries to make judicious use of the donated items, adding that they should not sell them as it was for their wellbeing and their babies.

The president said the club donated items,worth N690,000 , was another way the club was promoting maternal and child health .

“We will be following with more of these as well as delivery packs. We will be supporting outreach services to the five wards. Rotarians from our Club will join some outreach teams.

“We are also participating in health talks on clinic days in support of child Immunisation and health education of expectant mothers,” he said.

Speaking, the District Governor, District 9112 Rotary International, Mr Femi Adenekan, charged nursing mothers to be health- conscious in view of the cholera epidemic in the country.

Adenekan said he expected mothers to increase their hygiene level at this time , to combat cholera.

He also urged them to use the health centres when they notice anything affecting their health and that of their children.

Adenekan said the maternal and child health was the third area of focus out of its seven areas of focus.

According to him , July marks Maternal and Child Health month and the club is using the opportunity to move around extend more of its goodwill and support for the less-privileged in the community.

“This is the only way we can assist them; this is what Totary is all about; we are about giving life to the less-privileged and we give hope to the hopeless.

“We will continue to do our best to ensure we relieve the pains of our community because we are aware that government alone cannot do it.

“This is why we always charge the Rotary Club under District 9112 to go out and impact their community and change the life of the less-privileged,” he said.

Also speaking , the Chairman of the council, Mrs Rasheedat Abiodun-Adu ,lauded the Rotary Club of Ikoyi for coming out to impact nursing mothers in the council.

“This is not the first time they are showing this gesture here ,but the one they have done today is massive because we are looking at about 200 mothers.

“All the items that they brought here are not what we can see everywhere for everybody to be able to afford. We appreciate them for having the mothers and the babies in their heart,” she said.

The Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Health, District III, Dr Monsurat Adeleke, called for more public/private partnership to reduce deaths of pregnant mothers and babies in the state.

The permanent secretary, while thanking the Rotary Club Ikoyi for the donation, said the laudable initiative was also in tandem with what Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu set aside for them.

Adeleke noted that were 66 primary health care centres in district III and the many centres were deliberately created boost access to healthcare in the area.

She added that the governor created the various districts in the state to move governance and development closer to the people at the grassroots.

Adeleke therefore, urged the club to replicate the gesture in other council areas in order to impact more people.