With her toothless grin and wrinkled skin, as testaments of the blessing of the ages, but with contagious energy and wit, “There are stories on the lips of the elder” the old lady said as she retells old memories of Kupto. During its days of lack of amenities (healthcare and water) and how it transitioned to its present state. She gave birth to thirteen children all on her own at home because there is no hospital close by at the time. However, when they eventually had one, she was part of the people that encouraged women to deliver at the hospital to avoid complications which are mostly due to bleeding in her role as a traditional birth attendant.
“This was not our original community we were by the river bank before they moved us here,” she said. “In the old one, I gave birth to my twelve children there and came and gave birth to one here; during that time, there was no hospital; when the hospital came to Bajoga, they had to take you on foot to go see the doctor but I thank God, I finished having my children without any problem and without going to the hospital. I deliver in my room; In the past, there was no hospital but when we came here, they built a maternity hospital. I was given the mandate of going around to encourage women to go to the hospital. I was a traditional birth attendant and I was asked to help women to the hospital when they want to deliver but when there is an emergency delivery, I help them deliver at home.”
Now, with a functional hospital close to them, members of the Kupto community are relieved of the stress of traveling far to access healthcare. Not only this, even women from neighboring communities such as the Fulani settlement also come to use the health facility built by ActionAid in Kupto.
“We didn’t have water in this town; we have to carry bowls to our old town where there is a stream to fetch water; we don’t have water here. Where we used to go to fetch water before now is if not up to a mile, it will be more; (struggling to tell the distance) it’s far!” She exclaimed. “When God brought these organizations, (ActionAid and Hope for the Lonely) we thank God. We have a borehole here and it is still working. Both the young and old, those in town and villages are drinking from the water” Mama added.