Guest Blog from Tanzania Health Environment and Development Initiatives (THEDI)

Posted in: Uncategorised, by Bridge2Aid Team, on 9th April 2024 | 0 comments


A commemoration of the 2024 World Oral Health Day (WOHD) event in Misungwi District, Mwanza, Tanzania


Maintaining good oral hygiene habits like brushing twice a day, visiting the dentist every after six months, flossing, and limiting sugar intake are crucial to ensure health gums, preventing costly dental procedures and long-term health concerns.

Tanzania Health Environment and Development Initiatives (THEDI) and Bridge2Aid (B2A) are committed to improve access to quality oral healthcare services in six district councils of the Mwanza region, Tanzania. The initiative aims to address barriers such as low coverage, poor accessibility, lack of awareness, and limited resources, thereby enhancing the oral health outcomes of underserved populations.

The project is designed to increase coverage and access to quality oral healthcare services through outreach programs and capacity building training for Dental Therapists. Also, the project is centred in promoting positive oral health behaviours and practice through school based oral health promotion and use of Community Health Workers (CHWs) to distribute relevant oral health Information, Education and Communication (IEC) material to the community at large.

THEDI and B2A are piloting this comprehensive approach with Misungwi District Council, and all potential enabling factors necessary for the takeoff of the project already identified through a jointly planning process among all partners.

THEDI and Hope Dental Centre Mwanza As part of the project activities, from 19th to 20th of March 2024, THEDI and B2A lead the commemoration of the 2024 WOHD events together with Misungwi district council. The event was staged at Usagara Health Centre saving over 900,000 population.

One week prior to the actual days of execution of the event, community awareness campaign was conducted through official invitation letters which were sent to Ward Executive Officer (WEOs), Village Executive Officers (VEOs), Head of primary and secondary schools, and to all religious leaders within the catchment area. Further, one day prior the first day of the event, Misungwi district council devoted a public address vehicle to create awareness all over the Usagara wards.

The key message conveyed to the community was to invite for the commemoration of the WOHD event, whereas at district level was conducted in their ward, also theyTHEDI World Oral Health Day were informed that there will be a free oral health services including screening, treatment and where necessary referral to advanced oral health care services.

In two days, the project registered a total of 118 clients that presented with oral health conditions of them 47 were male and 71 were female. Among the common conditions presented were dental caries, periodontal conditions, dental abscess and eruptional disorders. Oral health services were jointly provided by experts from THEDI, CHICCO SPECIALIZED DENTAL CLINIC, HOPE DENTAL CENTER, AND MISUNGWI DISTRICT COUNCIL.

THEDI World Oral Health DayFor two days, communities received oral health education from experienced Oral Health Educators from Misungwi District councils. Among of the key issues conveyed to the communities included the types and function of various teeth, various oral health diseases, causes of oral health diseases, plastic teeth myth, oral health hygiene, teeth brushing and importance of fluoride, healthy diet favourable for oral health and examples of food stuff increasing the risk of dental caries.

The event was officiated by the Usagara Ward Councilor who also is the Chairperson of the Misungwi district (Hon. Kashinje Machibya). In his address remarks, he appreciated for considering Misungwi in the implementation of the project as it is very relevant and the communities are in need of the services, and also, showed his commitment in ensuring the project achieves its stated objectives “I will ensure the district set budget for procuring dental equipment in all eligible health facilities and mitigate for recruitment of needed dental personnels”.

The event was branded by banners and T-shirts from THEDI and EH4ALL, also there was a media coverage from Independent Television (ITV), Zanzibar Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) and Tumaini TV.

In May 2024 THEDI and B2A in collaboration with the Misungwi district council will conduct a Training of Trainer (ToT) for school based oral health promotion (teachers) and training Community health Workers (CHWs) who will use various community platforms to convey various oral health promotion messages like during the Reproductive and Child Health clinics (RCH) and other community gatherings.


No Comments

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Get social with us!

Connect with us online via our blog, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter

Keep in touch

Provide us with your name and address details and we’ll send you our regular email updates including news about events and fundraising. We will not share your data and you can unsubscribe at any time.

You can read our privacy policy here