According to a National Survey conducted in 2013 in five regions of Mali, the prevalence of chronic malnutrition varied between 21% in the capital Bamako, and up to 47% in Mopti. It is with the aim of improving some of these challenges that the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) is engaged in various health related projects in the Mopti and Djenne areas.
Access to quality health care: In response to the high infant mortality rate in Mopti, AKF helped establish 100 rural maternities, built by the villagers, with the assistance of the Foundation, which supplied the architect and master mason. Training was provided to a number of local masons and craftsmen. In addition, 470 latrines and wells were installed. These rural maternity health centres, staffed by over 100 community health workers trained by AKF, certified by the Ministry of Health and paid for by the community, have had an immediate positive impact on infant and maternal mortality.
Collection of health data: the M-health project has set up a system to collect health related data by SMS from rural clinics and hospitals to Regional health authorities. In addition, an e-learning system has been put in place to ensure ongoing training of rural staff, by the Bamako Faculty of Medicine.
Improved hygiene and nutrition: AKF is also working to reduce high rates of malnutrition and diarrhoeal diseases by supporting over 30,000 women and men farmers to increase and diversify their agricultural production; implementing a women’s literacy programme with nutrition as the first core subject; supporting the construction of low-cost drainage systems; facilitating community-led total sanitation processes; improving latrines and water points in schools; and training teachers in core health and hygiene competencies.