A Mother’s Call for Help

A Mother’s Call for Help

By: Sumana Mani with Brandy Campbell   |   Posted: February 08, 2007

CSP Offers Hope in Hard Times
Vellathai and her 7-month-old daughter, Revathy, stand outside their home in Vellanguli Village, India. The Child Survival Program has given Vellathai the hope that her little one will grow to be strong and healthy.

When Vellathai arrived at the Rhema Child Survival Program, her dark eyes were dulled by the exhaustion that comes from caring for a newborn her daughter, Revathy. But there was something much deeper, much sadder, in her haunted look.

Just months earlier, while she was pregnant with Revathy, Vellathai had lost her firstborn, also a daughter, to dehydration. It was almost too much for this young mother to bear, but the devastation spurred her to action. She would do anything she could to save her newborn daughter from the same fate.

Most mothers in India simply lack knowledge. When their children become dehydrated, mothers don't know how to strengthen their little ones' frail bodies, and mothers like Vellathai live in constant fear of the diseases that claim so many lives in their village. For Vellathai, knowledge has helped her redirect her energy from fear to action. Each week a worker from the Child Survival Program visits her home and teaches Vellathai how to prevent the malaria and diarrhea caused by the poor water supply in the village. She also receives nutritious food to feed her family, and is taught the importance of hygiene.

"I want my child to grow up healthy, without any sickness," says Vellathai. "Without the help of the CSP we cannot take care of our daily needs as well as the doctor's expenses when our baby becomes sick."

Although physical needs are often the most visible, Compassion's CSP projects look at the holistic health of mothers and children. While mothers are in literacy classes, their children are learning their colors. Many parents also attend counseling sessions to strengthen their marriages. Entire families learn of the love of the Father, and see in a real, comprehensible way that even the littlest child is important to God.

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