This past July our impact and partnerships team (Anne and Madeleine) traveled to Benin to conduct a training workshop in partnership with CARE. We have partnered with CARE to distribute 2500 Lucky Iron Fish to households across Benin. This project is designed to combat Benin’s extremely high rates of iron deficiency.
In Benin, 62.1% of children under the age of 5 suffer from iron deficiency anemia and 46.9% of women of reproductive age have iron deficiency anemia. These alarming statistics can impact the economic earning potential of families and the cognitive development of children. Iron deficiency anemia leaves individuals feeling weak, nauseous, and lethargic, ultimately lowering their quality of life.
Our visit to Benin began in Cotonou where we met with the CARE Benin team. Following a day of meetings and planning with the CARE team, we travelled to Benin’s political capital, Porto Novo. There, we conducted the training workshop with approximately 30 Béninois medical professionals, leading academics, and healthcare facilitators.
The next day we set off with our newly trained trainers to visit a local village just North of Porto Novo. In the village we conducted presentations in several small groups where we discussed what iron deficiency is, why iron is important, and how the fish combats iron deficiency.
We then joined the new trainers as they facilitated demonstrations on how to properly use the fish. The training day in the local village was quite successful and many of the locals were very keen to learn more about the fish and to use it themselves.
This visit to the village coupled with numerous interesting and enlightening conversations with the new trainers also yielded multiple, excellent learning opportunities for our team, that will help us to ensure the success of future training workshops!
Overall our trip to Benin was a great success and we would like to extend our thanks and appreciation to CARE for their guidance and support.