Thwake community residents upbeat about health and behavior change as dam construction steams on
Hundreds of residents drawn from Kanyangi Division in Kitui Rural constituency on Thursday, December 9, 2021 took part in health communication campaigns aimed at promoting positive changes in attitudes and behaviors as Thwake Dam construction progresses.
A team of staff from the Thwake Multipurpose Water Development Program, led by Program Implementation Team (PIT) Gender and Social Development Expert Ms. Rhoda Kambua and Community Liaison Team, took part in the Town Hall exercise which saw residents – mostly drawn from villages neighboring the project – educated and empowered on positive change behaviors and health matters.
“Social and behavior change communication plays a critical role in addressing social aspects of disease prevention and control. We will continue developing tailored approaches using a variety of communication channels to develop positive behaviors to the residents. As the dam progresses, population expands hence the need to carry out these structured campaigns,” said Ms. Kambua who was flanked by Senior Community Liaison Officer, Mr Dominick Kyenza.
The session was also attended by Assistant County Commissioner, Kanyangi Division Joshua Onyith and area chief Daniel Kithome. Also present were three assistant chiefs from Syomakanda, Mandongoi and Masimba sub-locations.
A team from consulting company – ICPHER led by Dr William Muturi which has been undertaking the exercise, presented elaborate health talks to the residents who were enthusiastic about the benefits that dam will bring to them.
“This is a good move for the residents. We’ve been carrying out a series of campaigns including a recent roadshow to educate the residents,” said Dr Muturi.
ICPHER has been carrying out a series of interventions through health communication campaigns covering water borne ailments like cholera, typhoid and dysentery. Others are Covid-19, HIV/AIDS and teenage pregnancies, issues of lifestyle diseases and respiratory infections.
Residents were also educated on benefits of health financing which will encompass registration with National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF), safety issues and nutrition.