In April-May, Karen, Kay and Marilyn spent three weeks at the Fakultas Ilmu Keperawatan (Faculty of Nursing), University of Indonesia. During our visit, we gave lectures in the Masters of Nursing (Leadership and Management ) program, presented a two-day workshop on Community Health Needs Assessment, visited the selected sites for the demonstration women's health projects in rural West Java, interviewed the students who will be coming to Memorial University of Newfoundland to take the Master of Nursing program, started to work on curriculum development for the Master of Nursing program in maternal and child health, University of Indonesia, had several planning sessions with our Indonesian colleagues to review project progress and future activities and met with key senior university and government officials to discuss the project and its objectives and progress. Our visits to the rural sites were particularly interesting and we even got to visit a new mother and baby in one of the villages. Our Indonesian colleagues appraised us of some of the major problems for mothers and infants in the rural areas. Lack of understanding and under utilization of professional health facilities, cultural beliefs and values and poverty are some of the major factors explained by our hosts that influence maternal and infant health outcomes. An important element of the demonstration projects will be working within and along side of the established health care system. The health personnel at the selected sites were very pleased their health centers had been chosen by the Indonesian project team and showed enthusiastic support. At the end of our visit we were left with a strong sense of the strength and resilience of the Indonesian people we are working with, in spite of the economic and political uncertainties which lie ahead.
In October, Sandra LeFort, Marilyn Porter and Shirley Solberg arrived in Jakarta. The overall goals of the visit were to work with the partner team to look at what project goals and objectives were being addressed, what needed strengthening, and what was not yet addressed at that point in time, but needed to be.
Specific Objectives of the visit were:
As well, the team heard about the economic and health problems of the people of the villages from the people themselves, all of whom have been affected by the financial crisis in Indonesia in 1997. There was an outbreak of Typhoid Fever in one of the villages and two children had died in one family. The FIKUI faculty noted there was a need for case-finding, follow-up of infected cases, institution of sanitation measures, health education for the public, training for volunteers and more resources for the community health workers to carry out their roles effectively.
Overall, both partners are satisfied with the progress achieved this year.
In September 2001 and April 2002 the mid-term project assessment was carried out by an independent evaluator. Some of the recommendations will help the teams plan the final two years of the project.