Healthcare as the basis for a life in dignity

  • Aminou Aboubakar and his mother in the health centre in Tokombéré. The two- year old boy was diagnosed with severe acute malnutrition and was suffering from diarrhoea. He received ready to use therapeutic food and recovered competely.

    Photo: Aktion gegen den Hunger/Sebastien Pagani

Aminou Aboubakar (1) is two years old. He and his parents are from a small village in the north of Cameroon. The north of Cameroon is barren and there is very little water which is frequently dirty or strongly polluted. Like many other children, Aminou became ill, suffering from diarrhoea and severe fever. He did not want to eat any more and lost an enormous amount of weight. At the same time, his small body became bloated, a visible sign of malnutrition. Local health care workers were alarmed and they diagnosed Aminou with severe acute malnutrition.

This is the most dangerous form of malnutrition. If left untreated, it can rapidly lead to death. If malnutrition continues for a long period of time, the lasting consequences will affect a child’s physical and mental development as learning process becomes more difficult for them and they become more vulnerable to diseases. These consequences are irreversible. It is therefore all the more important to start a quick treatment urgently. Aminou was transferred to Tokombéré Nutrition Centre where Action Against Hunger supports the local helpers with training. We also provide the nutritional centre with ready to use therapeutic food.

Aminou stayed in the hospital for two weeks where he received therapeutic food and medicines and recovered soon after and began to eat again. For his parents, the therapy was a complete success. Aminou’s father did not expect this at first. “Many people had been laid off when they arrived in the center. There was neither enough medicine for all the sick nor was the center adequately equipped. This has changed and thanks to Action Against Hunger, we can bring our sick children here at any time. For emergencies, there is even an ambulance that picks you up at your home and bring you here. ”

Meanwhile, Aminou and his family were able to return home. There, experts regularly visit him and he uses the therapeutic food. The family feels very well cared for. “While Aminou was being treated in the hospital, I was able to be with him all the time and take care of him. I got food and my son received free treatment”, says the little boy’s mother. “We were even brought home by car. I will share this experience with other women to show the importance of bringing the children to the hospital when they are sick.” In the past, all of this would have been unimaginable. The family hopes that the international assistance will continue to exist in the future for their community: “We are incredibly happy that Aminou regained his health. We would like to thank Action Against Hunger for everything they have done for our community. “

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(1)Name has been changed.