Success Stories

From Fragile to Flourishing: Muhammad’s Journey against Child Malnutrition

By Muhammad Mutual Ibrahim, Grace into James, Gloria shagayia, Fatima B. Muhammad, Abu Oshioke, Omileha Odey

Muhammad Auwal is a resilient young boy with a contagious smile, he resides with his loving parents in the humble neighbourhood of Limanchin Kona ward in Zaria Local Government Area. Little did he know that his life was about to change drastically when Interpersonal Communication Agents (IPCA) working on ANRiN (Accelerating Nutrition Results in Nigeria) project, an intervention of Society for Family Health (SFH) visited their home during their house-to-house delivery of Basic Package of Nutrition Services (BPNS) in November 2022.  

The diligent IPCAs immediately noticed the telltale signs of malnutrition in Muhammad. Concerned for his well-being, they wasted no time in enrolling him and the other household beneficiaries into the programme. Muhammad’s parents, overwhelmed with worry, were comforted, and guided through the process, understanding the crucial role they played in their son’s recovery. 

Recognizing the urgency of Muhammad’s situation, the IPCA team provided Muhammad’s parents with invaluable counselling and made a timely referral to the renowned Babban Dodo Primary Health Care Center in Zaria. The centre, known for its exceptional care and expertise in combating malnutrition, welcomed Muhammad and his family with open arms. 

In a stroke of serendipity, the Nutrition Focal Person of the Zaria Local Government Area at Babban Dodo Primary Health Care Center, realising the gravity of Muhammad’s condition and being moved by his resilient spirit, the Nutrition Focal Person personally took the responsibility of overseeing Muhammad’s progress. This unexpected turn of events further invigorated Muhammad’s parents and renewed their hope for their son’s recovery. 

The IPCA team, demonstrating unwavering dedication, maintained regular contact with Muhammad’s family. They acted as a compassionate support system, consistently following up to ensure that all medical appointments were kept and that the treatment instructions were diligently followed. Their presence and encouragement transformed the journey towards recovery into a joint effort, fostering trust and strengthening the bond between the IPCA team and Muhammad’s family. 

After four weeks of comprehensive care at Babban Dodo Primary Health Care Center, Muhammad’s transformation was nothing short of miraculous. The before and after pictures captured his incredible progress, illustrating the profound impact of the combined efforts of the IPCA team, the dedicated staff at the health care centre, and, of course, Muhammad’s unwavering determination. 

The ANRiN programme has reached new heights, eradicating child malnutrition in Zaria Local Government Area and serving as a model for other regions facing similar challenges. Muhammad’s journey became a symbol of hope, demonstrating that with compassion, dedication, and collective effort, every child can thrive and overcome even the most daunting obstacles. 

Today, Muhammad continues to flourish, surrounded by a community that cherishes him as a living testament to the power of perseverance and love. His future is filled with endless possibilities, and his story remains etched, thanks to ANRiN (Accelerating Nutrition Results in Nigeria) project, an intervention implemented by Society for Family Health (SFH) on behalf of Kaduna State Government. 

Muhammad before treatment
Muhammad following referral & treatment