September 2016

Open Hospital: a project in collaboration with Informatics Without Borders Onlus!

Today we want to share with you a project we have been working on for quite some time: “Open Hospital”. As some of you may already know, Kito Onlus is present in San Francisco, in the Camotes Islands, with the Kito Health Center for emergencies. Nevertheless, building a medical structure is not sufficient, indeed it is fundamental that its activities are carried on in a proper and efficient way, once the center is operative; this is why Kito Onlus decided to establish a partnership with Informatics Without Borders Onlus: thank to this collaboration the health center will be provided with a computer on which the software Open Hospital, developed by Informatics Without Borders, is going to be installed, and a 15 days training will be organized in order to provide the medical personell with the necessary abilities in order to use the software in a correct way.

Briefly, Open Hospital, able to function with very basic computers and without Internet connection, works as a medical record: it permits to register patients’ data in a simple and intuitive way and to create automatically an historical record, which the doctor can easily access at anytime. Moreover, it is possible to print the medical record in a PDF version: this may represent a useful reminder for the patient, and may be used in the course of communications with other health centers and hospitals. Open Hospital software is also able to register exams and vaccines, to keep under control the usage of pharmaceuticals and to facilitate the management of orders. Last but not least, thanks to this software it may be also possibile to collect data upon which to elaborate general reports and statistics useful to verify the efficiency of the health center and to develop action plans and prevention activities. If the project is successful, new functionalities, beyond the basic ones, might be developed depending on the needs of the health center.

In order to supervise the implementation of the project, members of the staff of both Kito Onlus and Informatics Without Borders Onlus will be present in San Francisco: follow us and we will tell you everything about their work there!

serena-filippineOur Project Assistant Serena working in San Francisco together with Ryan, member of the Municipality Staff. On the right, Serena with the Mayor of San Francisco, Aly Arquillano.

International Day of Peace

Today, September 21, we celebrate the International Day for Peace, brought into being by a Resolution of the UN General Assembly in 1981 and, since 2001, meant as a day of non-violence and cease fire. All over the world, from Italy to the Philippines, people organize events in order to spread and promote the ideals and the culture of peace. This year the theme of Peace Day is “The Sustainable Development Goals: Building Blocks for Peace”. The sustainable development goals – sustainability is the capacity of addressing the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs – were adopted in 2015 by the 193 Member States of the United Nations and are part of Agenda 2030, a program of action for people, for the planet and prosperity. The 17 goals are therefore, as defined by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, “a to-do list for persons and for the planet” and they entail, among other things, gender equality, quality education for all and the end of poverty.

Goal #16 deals specifically with peace but actually, and peace day is also meant to remind it us all, all 17 goals are necessary in order to achieve peace and peace is the only context in which the goals can be fulfilled.

In order to fulfil the development goals words are not enough: in the support given to populations in need, in addressing the needs of women and girls, in the building of sustainable structures, Kito Onlus is willing to create a more equal and fair world through its activities.

Are you with us?

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Good news for our Health Center in San Francisco!

Recently Kito Onlus has received a very important support from the municipality of Padova. The municipal council, following a proposal of Assessor Marina Buffoni, who had already showed her interest in our organization’s activities, has awarded a € 10.000 grant to Kito Onlus’ Health Center for emergencies in San Francisco, Camotes Islands. With this contribution, and as already planned in the project, the health center will be provided with an energy storage system with photovoltaic panels able to supply electricity. The structure, entirely built with natural local materials will be energetically self-sufficient and an example of sustainable construction. The success of the health center – we’ve recently talked about it here – is of great importance since the municipality of San Francisco, which is difficult to reach especially during natural disasters, lacks of medical structures and has an extremely precarious electricity grid.

An electrical connection is essential during emergencies for it ensures that the medical activities take place and it permits to keep in touch with emergencies’ units thank to the proper functions of Internet connection.

Stay tuned for news!

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SUMMER 2016 IN SAN FERNANDO LA UNION

This summer Kito Onlus’ activities in the Barangay Sagayad of San Fernando La Union haven’t stopped. The positive trends registered by the Kito Health Unit during past months (we talked about it in this article) do continue and moreover, together with the Barangay Officials and the Barangay Health Worker Volunteers (BHWV) new programs and initiatives have been developed.

On July 27 an anti-bullying campaign was organized, in partnership with the Philippine National Police and the Sagayad Elementary School, in order to promote situation awareness and to teach children how to deal with such an issue. The latter is in fact widespread in the Philippines, with about 31 cases reported every day.

Another serious problem faced by the country is that of malnutrition: in the Barangay Sagayad 7 children are severely malnourished. Thus Kito Onlus has decided to partner with the Barangay Council of Sagayad with the aim of leading a daily feeding program, from Tuesday to Friday, for these children’s parents. Families are thought the basics of a correct alimentation and provided with meals containing rice, meat, vegetables, powdered vitamins and healthy drinks. The program will conclude by the end of the year and the weight of the children will be constantly monitored.

Again in this field, Kito Onlus has also organized feeding programs for day care children. Some of them are underweight, therefore their weight needs to be monitored day by day. The program is already showing positive results and it will go on.

Be always up to date with the latest news from our projects in the Philippines, keep reading our blog!

campagna-anti-bullismoAnti-bullying campaign

feeding-programFeeding program

Emergencies in Italy: disproportionate damages and the importance of prevention

We frequently talk about natural disasters affecting the Philippines, among which there are typhoons, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. But Italy too is often subject to emergencies caused by natural events. Like the earthquake of magnitude 6.0 on the Richter Scale that devastated Central Italy on 24 August 2016. The seismic activity hasn’t ceased yet and there have been registered other 5000 minor shakes since then.

Data about the seismic activity in Italy can be traced back to 2500 years ago and it has been calculated that the peninsula is affected by disastrous earthquakes at least once every five years. According to Civil Protection Department’s data, Italy is one of the countries in the Mediterranean with the highest seismic risk, due to its geographic position, between the African and the Eurasian plates, and because it is a geologically young territory frequently subjected to aftershocks.

But it’s not only about earthquakes, Italy is also affected by other natural calamities: the volcanic risk, less frequent and less devastating than the seismic one, is dangerous especially for the most inhabited areas and hydrogeological phenomena, such ad landslides (over 200 events in 2015) and floods (12.218 km² of the territory are at high risk), are diffused all over the Italian territory (see the Hydrogeological Report 2015 by ISPRA). Italy is also exposed to tsunami and fire risks; fires are in fact responsible for the loss of 12% of the domestic forestry heritage.

Some of these natural events cannot be foreseen, but all of them are influenced, in a positive or negative way, by human activities; that is why prevention is so important. Sadly, Italy is actually criticised, even abroad, for the lack of the right preparation and response to emergencies. Damages are usually disproportionate in respect with the magnitude of the event that causes them.

This article underlines the major critiques raised in relation to the earthquake of August 24: there was no national plan for seismic prevention, construction’s norms are too permissive, buildings are too old and unsafe. Geologist Mario Tozzi recently stated that an earthquake of magnitude 6 should not provoke so many ruins and victims in an advanced country; such an earthquake would only cause fear in Japan or California, nothing else. Indeed, developing countries too could be taken as an example for the attention they pay to prevention and risk management. An example is offered by the Philippines and their Nationals Earthquakes Drills, earthquakes’ simulations organized by the government at the national level (read our article here). These are essential in preparing the population to face an event that, even if unpredictable, it destined to happen, sooner or later. We can keep looking at the Philippines even for emergencies’ response. The country is indeed witness of the useful role played by mobile units for emergencies: the Kito HUT, energetically sustainable thanks to photovoltaic panels located on the roof and ready for use, with no need of specialized workers in charge to assemble it, demonstrated its importance in post-emergency scenarios.

Every territory is different but this does not mean that Italy shouldn’t think about making use of remedies that proved to be extremely valuable in similar contexts.

Amatrice, 24 agosto 2016 (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

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