JFF’s MMS Program Success in Pakistan

The Junaid Family Foundation’s (JFF) Pakistan office recently returned from a monitoring and evaluation trip to the districts of Sindh and Balochistan to assess the progress of the Multiple Micronutrient Supplementation (MMS) program. The team was able to see MMS being directly given to women in various settings and hear first-hand experiences on the positive effects of use during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

MMS is made up of 15 essential vitamins and minerals that help mediate 3 of 6 global nutrition targets: reduced low birth weight, stunting, and anemia in mothers. This cost-effective supplement was donated by JFF in partnership with Kirk Humanitarian and has now been distributed to over 1 million women and counting in Pakistan.

In Sindh, the JFF team came across a seasoned Lady Health Worker (LHW) who has transformed her home into a “health house,” also known as a community health center. This LHW (“BJ”) has dedicated her life to helping those in need in Pakistan. Now, having access to MMS to dispense to pregnant and lactating women, she has the tools needed to combat very common concerns and ailments that arise during the pre- and antenatal stages. While in BJ’s health house, a woman who had used MMS during her second pregnancy noted how much the supplement helped both her and the baby. She reported that her second child was healthier at birth compared to her first and attributed this to MMS use.

During the second half of the trip, the JFF team continued to receive rave reviews of MMS amongst LHWs, health officials, and mothers who used the product. Venturing to Balochistan, the team met a mother who had recently given birth and was initially struggling with breastfeeding. After consistent MMS use, this mother noted significant improvement in milk supply. This not only physically brought relief to the mother but also gave her the ease of mind knowing she could continue breastfeeding her child with the use of MMS, which she called “taakat vaalee golee” or the “strength pill.”

Throughout the visits to both districts, JFF observed exemplary record-keeping practices amongst all levels of distribution of MMS. This record-keeping further emphasized the quality of the program and continual need for the supplement in the country.

The Junaid Family Foundation is exceptionally proud and grateful to Kirk Humanitarian and the Ministry of National Health Services Regulations and Coordination, Government of Pakistan for the great success of the MMS program, and looks forward to continued collaboration to help continue improving maternal health and decreasing malnutrition in the country.
 

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