To celebrate International Women’s Day, we are highlighting the personal reflections of women who lead the various Home-Start Worldwide member organisations and the impact their organisations are making. Read below for Delfina Pacho’s (Home-Start Morogoro Municipal) insightful account.

Tell us what motivated you to get involved with/set up a Home Start organisation?

As a graduate of Bsc in Home Economics and Human Nutrition and working with women and children for a long period of time; this allowed me to observe the deficiencies in parenting skills which then created an urge to start up the HS scheme.

Can you describe any challenges your organisation has faced and overcome?

The biggest challenge that our organisation is facing is financial support to enable transport fares for volunteers. In addition to this, the extreme poverty experienced by most of the registered families make it impossible to fulfill basic needs for the young children and families in general.

The organisation seek support from international and local donors to help these families with some basic needs. With this, we have managed to provide food and clothing as well as transport fares for the twelve trained volunteers.

With International Women’s Day in mind, can you describe any programmes or events over the years aimed towards the female community within your organisation e.g. mother & baby programmes? If so, what positive impact has there been for both service users (families) and volunteers?

We were able to partner with other organisations on Nutrition days that are done regularly at ward level involving women groups with children under the age of 2 years. The women involved in these programmes are now keen to follow meal frequency and quality. Their children are falling less ill and their health have improved tremendously.

What have been some of your own personal highlights in the organisation’s growth and the impact volunteers and services have made?

Though the organisation’s growth rate is slow, the volunteers’ attitudes have changed and they have been able to influence the mothers in the program to take good care of their children. Most families know what kind of aid they expect from Home Start and they ask for help and get linked on time.