From Skeptic to Advocate: The Story of Bapak Sepri

Thursday, April 05, 2018

Photo by Meitty

“In the beginning I did not want to attend the Posyandu (community health post). To be honest, I preferred to go to the field to harvest rice so I could earn a bit of income. But after joining the parenting class at Posyandu, I learned this activity is good and will benefit myself and other parents on how to best raise our children.”

These are the words of Bapak Sepri, a father in Langira Mutu village, on the remote island of Sumba. Before this moment, his wife was a regular attendee at SurfAid’s parenting classes, but one day she was unable to attend. When asked to take her place at the parenting class, Pak Sepri did not want to go, thinking what a waste of time…However, after begrudgingly listening to his wife and attending the class, Pak Sepri discovered the value of SurfAid’s parenting advice.

Photo by Meitty

SurfAid’s parenting classes coach mothers, fathers and caretakers on topics including nutrition, hygiene and sanitation – basic but life-saving lessons in an area where child malnutrition is ubiquitous.

Most cases of malnutrition are preventable with simple behaviour change. Parents who attend the classes learn that sufficient energy and nutrient intake requires good care and feeding practices, as well as good food. They are coached on child rearing, and after childbirth are encouraged to visit the Posyandu to monitor growth and implement early interventions where necessary.

“Now I see that to be a good parent, we actually have a lot to learn…” said Bapak Sepri, having learned his role in combating child malnutrition.

Join SurfAid as we continue to empower more parents to fight malnutrition, and give their children a higher chance of growing up healthy and strong.