February 2016

…from a thesis project to the Kito Health Center

The project of the Kito Health Center, now under construction in the island of San Francisco, in the Camotes Islands (Philippines) was born thanks to the thesis research of Doctor Carola Roccatagliata: in fact, Carola has graduated in Architecture defending a thesis entitled “Project Tulang Diot”, in which she has elaborated an architectural project of the Health Center that Kito Onlus is constructing in San Francisco thanks to the OPM – Chiesa Valdese donations.

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Carola’s thesis

The development of the thesis has been personally followed by our President, Architect Paola Vecchiato, who has believed in the feasibility of the Health Center since the very beginning. Thanks to her precious work of fundraising and fund scouting she has been able to make it possible.

Carola’s research has developed on several levels: after analyzing the characteristics of the island, she has analyzed the local building system; on top of this, an analysis of emergency architecture has completed the research, from which the Kito Health Center has been designed. Not a shelter – a temporary repair -, rather a multifunctional structure that can run during emergencies thanks to its sustainability and its energetic autonomy, which will also function as a stable ambulatory, a medical point of reference for the inhabitants of the island, which is right now lacking any kind of structure dedicated to first aid and  basic healthcare assistance.

Hence, this project has allowed to guarantee access to medical assistance to the population of San Francisco. Moreover, during the construction, trainings will be delivered to the population, in order to introduce them to the topic of resilient and typhoon-prone construction methods: the trainings will be based on the researches done by Carola to guarantee that the Health Center is typhoon-prone; in this way, the knowledge that she analyzed will be useful to the local community as well.

Kito Onlus is very proud to have finally started the works for building the Health Center on the island of San Francisco, and all the staff wishes to thank Carola for the job developed together and congratulate for her results!

Many activities give start to a sparkling new year at the Kito Health Unit!

January has started off the right way in San Fernando, La Union. Our local staff has worked very hard to carry out numerous activities with the local population: an anti-mosquito campaign, a feeding program, a vitamin A and deworming program and – last but not least – dental check ups directed to the children of the local elementary school in barangay Sagayad, where the Kito Health Unit is located since 2014.

  • Anti-mosquito Campaign

Given the risk of dengue fever rising again in the City of San Fernando, La Union, the staff of Kito Health Unit in partnership with the City Health Office has conducted an anti-mosquito campaign to prevent this and other viruses from spreading. A regular community clean-up has been highly encouraged; moreover,  to prevent mosquitoes from entering the households, the installment of nets and screens has been suggested. Lastly,  relevant information about dengue was disseminated through flyers and house visits in the area. “Operation Tak-Tak” was also promoted during the house to house visit: stagnant water has been removed and water storage tanks have been covered, in order to avoid the laying of eggs by mosquitoes.

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Kito staff lectures community members about the dangers carried by mosquitoes

Since summer is coming in the Philippines, proper water conservation has been promoted to the residents. Kito staff taught the community how to conserve water and how to re-use water for other purposes, avoiding at the same time the spreading of mosquitoes and dangerous diseases.

  • Feeding Program, Vitamin A and Deworming

Every other day, Kito Onlus has conducted a feeding program for day care students. Weight of each student is being monitored by the Kito Health Unit staff, in order to assess and eventually intervene in cases of  malnutrition.

Children waiting in line to be wighted at the Kito Health Unit

As the Department of Health  still promotes the deworming, Kito staff did a house to house distribution of deworming pills as well as vitamin A.

  • Dental Check-up

Lastly, the City Health Office in partnership with Kito Unit has decided to conduct a dental mission at Sagayad Elementary School, where Kito staff together with specialized staff has delivered a oral hygiene lecture, dental check ups, and it has handed out basic hygiene kits to the students of the elementary school.

We can therefore say that the new year has started off in a great way in barangay Sagayad, where the Kito Unit provides medical assistance to the population all year around, not only by providing a safe place for medical care, but also providing basic care to the community through campaigns such as the ones that have been delivered in January. Good job to all the Kito Health Unit staff in San Fernando!!

A new adventure for Kito Onlus!

This week starts with great news from our Association: the works for building a Health Center in San Francisco, Camotes Island are beginning! Constructing the Health Center has been possible thanks to our donor Chiesa Valdese. In the past months Kito Onlus has worked for finding a local construction company that could take on the building process. The health center will be located in the relocation area of Barangay Esperanza, near the designated rescue area.

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The building will measure 80 square meters and will be built of local material, as bamboo wood. Moreover, only indigenous people will be employed for constructing the structure, after being trained on resilient building methods. All these choices are taken to make the process as sustainable as possible.

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To conclude, we are definitely ready for this new adventure!

Kito Onlus at Casa Don Gallo

Yesterday, February 11th, Kito Onlus started a Health, Hygiene and Prevention training session for Casa Don Gallo’s residents in Padova. The house, which was occupied by Razzismo Stop in 2013, is one of the more active places working on the migrants’ emergency in the city today. In fact, about 70 migrants with residence permit are currently living in the structure, speaking different languages, coming from different countries, and worshipping different religions. Nonetheless, the home’s environment conditions are very precarious, since they do not have any access to electricity or hot water, and the drainage system just broke down.

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In January, after they spent several cold months without heating, Architetti Senza Frontiere gifted 13 gas heaters. Kito Onlus wants to contribute as well in increasing the wellbeing in the house, by providing the training, of which a second part will take place on Wednesday 17th, from 4am to 5pm.

Yesterday we started with a debate on the holistic meaning of health, and then we talked about personal hygiene and the problem of parasites. More than 20 people of different age participated, whose birth countries are mainly Nigeria, Ghana and Togo. The environment revealed to be very participative, and we are looking for going on with the mission!

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Kito Onlus working for children’s well-being

Kito Onlus pays attention to particularly disadvantaged groups. Among them, children are one of the targets benefitting more from our action. In San Fernando La Union, where our Kito Health Unit is placed, 4768 children from the age 0-12 have been treated. Services of maternal health, immunization and nutrition are carried out on a regular basis in our Health Center, but also extra campaigns as medical and dental missions are delivered. The latter are usually very required and appreciated. To be more specific, according to the data we collected in 2015 the number of mothers treated during the children’s early life amounts to 118. Being this vital stage essential for letting children healthily growing up, Kito Onlus is very proud of the achievement.

Further analyzing collected data, the total number of children immunized amounted to 1228. MMR was the immunization treatment more delivered, since the 30% of patients were treated using it.

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Concerning the nutrition campaign, it is important to highlight how malnutrition is a sever issue in the Philippines, as Filipinos do not follow a nutritive diet. This style of living is really affecting children, therefore vitamins are regularly handed out to them.

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 As it is observable in the following graph, other diseases were treated using different drugs (as paracetamol to treat colds) and other health monitoring – especially height/weight checks – were set up.

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241 patients have benefitted of extra activities, the most successful of which was the dental mission, comprehending tooth extractions.

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 To conclude, Kito Onlus action clearly demonstrated its effectiveness in facing children health. In fact, services were provided to more than 13000 patients, and health center keeps being a reference point for children seeking health support, but also for older patients.

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