January 2018
Table of Contents
Parenting Well Programs (Malezi Mema) Take Off 
Worldwide, women and children in poor and rural communities face the challenges of pregnancy, infancy, childhood and parenthood without supportive relationships in the home or community. Children growing up in these environments face the toxic stresses of death, disability, poverty, violence and neglect. 
Malezi Mema (“Parenting Well” in Swahili) is a growing AMPATH initiative designed to teach parenting skills and ultimately, to improve health for children and families.
The Malezi Mema parenting program focuses on providing mothers with a core set of parenting skills aimed at increasing home based cognitive stimulation through song, play and dance. It also works to reduce parental stress and provide alternative methods to harsh punishment when it comes to managing difficult behavior.
The program utilizes AMPATH’s established network of peer support groups for mothers, called “chamas.” Women join these groups in pregnancy and remain in them for 3-4 years. Upon joining, women pledge to participate in bi-weekly meetings for one year and uphold chama goals including to support each other, to save and become entrepreneurs, and to commit to self-selected health and child development goals. Central to the chama approach is the integration of health, social and financial education with a savings/loans program.
Community health volunteers are working to implement Malezi Mema into chama communities. What began in 2015 with 18 chamas and 613 mom and kids is now being scaled with support from a family foundation, the Abbvie Foundation and Saving Lives at Birth. Within three years, Malezi Mema will reach 2,225 young mothers and their children over a population of 1.2 million people. Monitoring and evaluation teams are tracking the program’s impact and aim to demonstrate a 30% decrease in maternal and infant mortality, a 30% decrease in the use of harsh punishment and a 15% increase in early childhood growth.
By comprehensively addressing harsh punishment, parental stress, poor growth, and preventive health with Malezi Mema, AMPATH is interrupting the cycle of poverty and neglect that prevents children from growing into and thriving as young adults.
Fighting the Public Health Threat of Counterfeit Drugs 
Fake pharmaceuticals are a multi-billion dollar problem around the world, and especially problematic in Sub-Saharan Africa. Lives are truly at stake when counterfeiters sell fake drugs or include lower quantities of substances like antibiotics.
PBS Newshour highlighted AMPATH’s innovative efforts to stop this scourge by working to implement the paper analytical device or PAD, an easy to use testing tool for pharmaceuticals that was developed by chemists at the University of Notre Dame.
Dr. Mercy Maina of Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital was interviewed for the story which aired in December. 
In an ongoing partnership between Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital, Purdue University, and Notre Dame, researchers buy medicines and then use the paper strip to test them. Pharmaceuticals can be spread on the PAD which is then dipped in water, and color changes show whether the correct drug is present. At a cost of just 50 cents per PAD, a clinic can test the medicines that patients are buying, and pharmacists can check that suppliers have given them the right drugs.
The collaboration is part of AMPATH’s ongoing work to provide access to high quality pharmacy services throughout Western Kenya. Since 2003, Purdue University College of Pharmacy has been providing pharmaceutical care and training through AMPATH. 

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