The Alola Foundation through its Integration Approach Project works together to improve the nutritional status of children. The approach will enable each program of Alola to intervene, according to expertise, sector includes strengthening community groups to improve the health status of women and children, enhance nutrition education, increase income generation of women in rural area and women leadership and decision making. The project location has targeted two villages of Caimauc and Manumera in the Turiscai administrative post, Manufahi municipality.

In 2018, the Integration Approach Project officially launched and inauguration of community group called Village Loves Mother and Babies. Beforehand there were two activities implemented include consultation and socialization of the project and Focus group discussion-FGD. Subsequently, it’s followed by the problem participatory assessment and training on various topics. The details of the output are as follows:

Consultation and socialization of integration approach project

The four program representatives initially held a meeting with the local authorities and stakeholders for an Integrated Approach Project in Manufahi municipality. The consultation had introduced the steps and process of the integration approach to local authorities and stakeholders which will be implemented in the target village as a pilot project for 3 years (208-2020). In addition, local authorities and stakeholders that had been participated committed to support the project implementation, and will collaborate for the success of the integration approach project. The local authorities have reinforced their statement that Alola Foundation is the first local NGO that had an idea of establishing an Integration Approach Project to respond to nutritional problems in Timor Leste. The consultation had conducted in Manufahi and the socialization was in Turiscai with the participation of president of local municipalities, Director of health in municipal, Director of Education in municipal, Director of Ministry Agriculture in municipalities, and President of Women Association.

Focus Group Discussion (FGD)

Furtherance of the project, focus group discussion has been implemented. As a result, focus group discussion identifies and lists the idea on the issue and its causes contributed using participatory methods. Those findings will be as baseline data to fortify design plan of the integration approach project in referring village. The focus group discussion was held twice involving local leaders, stakeholders and around 70 community members from two villages, Manumera and Caimauc.

The Launching of Integrated Approach Project

On 17th of October 2018, Alola Foundation officially launched a new pilot project named the integration project approach in the commemoration of World Rural Women’s Day. The ceremony confirms Alola long-term commitment to progress living conditions of women and children in rural areas. The project will combine resources of four programs of Alola to the deliberate development of the target area. At the same time, the community group named Village Loves its Mother and Babies was inaugurated in village of Caimauc and Manumera.

Head of Turiscai Administrative Post, Mr. Julio Godinho, during the opening remark, expressed his appreciation to the Alola Foundation in fulfilling its commitment to implementing an integrated approach to its work area. As representative of the local government, during the launch, he encouraged newly appointed SHIO members to become motivated in the community to contribute to the improvement of their lives. The inauguration ceremony held in the Hall of the Turiscai Administrative Post was attended by various representatives of government institutions such as local government, heads of health centers, police, representatives of the ministry of education, village councils, youth representatives, SHIO members and also attended by local communities. 

Intervention of Maternal and Child Health program

Following the launching of the integrated approach initiative and inauguration of SHIO, the Maternal and Child Health program continue to carry out the Problem Participatory Analysis (PPA) training, training on Infant Young Child Feeding, and SHIO monthly meeting cover several topics include health promotion, counseling, and household visit.

The output of the intervention is as follows:

  • Issues related to health and its factor contribute has identified, and it has contributed to the development of project plan adequately based on the needs of the community through the Problem Participatory Analysis –PPA session during three days. The assessment session had been participated by SHIO member about 29 people (Female: 13, Male: 16) from Caimauc and Manumera village.
  • The SHIO member understanding of exclusive breastfeeding, complementary feeding of children age 0-2 year, family planning, and safe birthing practices have been increased. The training has participated by 30 people (Female: 15, Male: 15).
  • The calendar for SHIO member activities on household visits, health promotion and counseling had designed and developed. In addition, group member has attain information regarding the process of health promotion, and counseling trough monthly meeting, which has held two times in each village. The total group member participated about 60 people (Female: 29, Male: 31).

This integration project approach was supported by the Alola Australia.