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The Community Hero!

Hello.. Today (07/09/22) one of the SID staff had the opportunity to meet with Mrs. Selamah, the cadre leader in Selong, East Lombok Regency who was also one of the staff of SID enumerators 20 years ago during the SUMMIT Trial program. She is a public health hero. People like her play a big role in policy change by helping to improve maternal and child health in Lombok and even nationally and globally.

Trained cadres at Posyandu who are recruited through selection and evaluated for their performance on a regular basis through training, mentoring and ongoing evaluation, have a very big role to help improve the health of pregnant women, babies and children with high quality work. Cadres have a role as educators, who provide health information to the community and also as a motivator for the community to visit posyandu and provide awareness to the community about their health.

They are the real heroes.

The SUMMIT Trial (2000-2004) is a large-scale, community-based study involving 42,000 pregnant women in Lombok to evaluate the impact of giving multi micronutrient supplements (Multiple Micronutrient Supplements/MMS) compared to iron-folic acid (IFA) on pregnancy outcomes. From the study with a double-blind randomized controlled trial, it was found that giving MMS alone could reduce the mortality rate of infants <28 days old and this reduction was more significant in anemic or undernourished mothers according to the LILA standard <23.5 cm. The study also eventually became one of the evidences that prompted changes in global recommendations by the World Health Organization, which now recommends countries with a high prevalence of anemia in pregnant women to provide supplementation in the form of MMS containing at least 13-15 micronutrients, not only IFA (iron-folic acid) tablets which were the previous standard.

The results of the SUMMIT trial also show that increasing routine antenatal care through a participatory approach from cadre mothers can improve the health condition of pregnant women. This can be achieved by improving the quality of human resources as well as evidence-based decision making. Therefore, SID strives to improve public health and develop quality human resources.

Many of SUMMIT’s staff at the village level have become influential people in their communities. They save lives and uplift communities with their hard work and dedication. It wasn’t easy to do that, but they managed to do it.

The implementation of the SUMMIT trial became the forerunner to the establishment of a non-profit organization with a global reputation in Mataram in 2007, namely the Yayasan Institut Pengembangan Suara Mitra or better known as the Summit Institute for Development (SID). Until now, SID is still standing strong because of the continuous support from the community and other partners.

Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much!

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