At the Tiny Tim & Friends clinic we pride ourselves on working closely with all of our patients. When Juliet, aged 12, came to the clinic at the end of 2015 complaining of stomach pains, gastric problems and suffering from significant weight loss , weighing only 26kgs (57lbs) we were quick to go to the family home and undertake an assessment.
During the home visit the mother admitted to recently losing her job. As a single mother, finding money for food for her three children was becoming increasingly difficult.
Without food taking medication was a struggle for Juliet and she had begun to have difficulty moving around from the abdominal pains, and thus was unable to go to school.
As Juliet was sick, her mother was unable to go and look for a new job, as she was unable to leave Juliet with her Cousin, who usually looked after her.
Juliet has been with the TTF Clinic for over 5 years, we have worked closely with her over the years to help her understand HIV and the importance of taking her medication. She was emotionally very confused.
She wanted to take her medication, but felt very unwell when she did. The situation was becoming very traumatic for her.
BY PROVIDING JUST 3 MONTHS OF NUTRITIONAL SUPPORT,
OVER A PERIOD OF 8 MONTHS, 12 YEAR OLD JULIET PUT ON 9KGS (20lBS)
We worked to enroll Juliet into our nutrition program, providing weekly food packages for her and her family, and regular lessons on nutrition, food hygiene and water and sanitation.
Within the space of only a couple of weeks Juliet was stating that her abdominal pain had disappeared, and she was finding it very east to take her medication.
Over the course of 3 months Juliet put on almost 6kgs and grew 7cms.
With Juliet feeling better, her mother was able to get a new job, to bring in much needed income for the family and provide food to help.
Since leaving the nutrition program, with her mother working and able to provide food, Juliet has continued to thrive. She continues to gain weight and grow and now 35kgs, measuring at a very healthy body mass on the BMI (Body Mass Index).
Her mother is incredibly thankful for the support. This timely intervention has been life altering for the entire family.