By Jonathan Ugbal; Government House Correspondent
To meet Sustainable Development Goal 3 of ensuring healthy lives and promoting the well-being for all at all ages in Cross River State, a more proactive measure needs to be taken said wife of Cross River Governor Linda Ayade while addressing United Nations representatives recently in Abuja.
Linda, in her speech to mobilize support for the Mediatrix Development Foundation (MDF), a non-profit organization founded by her to address many persistent and emerging health issues that affect maternal and child health which according to her “has initiated novel and evidenced-based health projects that will improve health and wealth in Cross River State”, also disclosed that her efforts were in response to the international call to attain SGD 3 by 2030.
“I am committed to the improvement of mother and child health in Cross River State. Using my good offices and licensed Non-governmental Non0profit making organization; MDF, I hope to enlarge the channels through which the less privileged in the society and indeed everyone in Cross River State can benefit from quality health care services in their communities.
“My foundation aims at improving the lives of women and children by reducing the burden of communicable and non-communicable diseases, within these targeted populations in Cross River State through effective collaborations with government parastatals, relevant stakeholders and partners of which the United Nations is key” Linda said.
Outlining her plans to the UN representatives, Linda amongst others mentioned the improvement of ante-natal care service uptake and skill birth attendance at delivery through the “Community Policing of Pregnant Women” scheme, the “Clean Hand Campaign” for children under 5, Hunt Malaria Initiative, Advocacy programs, proposing a bill to make sanitation compulsory, mobile health diagnostic and remedy clinics, outreaches, widows empowerment, universal health coverage advocacy and holiday programs for children.
Also, she listed the achievements of the foundation to include the establishment of over 45 Hunt Malaria Initiative clubs, empowerment of widows, supporting the campaign to end violence against children, donation of over 1,000 “mama kits” to pregnant mothers, free medical outreaches, organization of essay writing competition to mark the world literacy day, partnering with “Project Future Assured”, an initiative of the wife of the president, Aisha Buhari, to carry out outreaches for 3,000 women in Calabar amongst others.
On the next steps, Linda listed developing a strategic plan for MDF, mobilizing and raising funds for MDF health projects, scaling up of the Hunt Malaria Initiative club to cover 150 schools in the state and scaling up the maternal and child health interventions to more communities in Cross River State.