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Miraculous milestones for Malita!

This month marks a wonderful milestone for Malita. From an incredibly premature and frail baby with little hope of survival, to a strong and healthy toddler who is back home with her family, this is Malita's story so far.  

A tiny arrival

Malita was born prematurely in August 2021. After remaining in hospital for a week she was deemed well enough to leave, but her mother tragically passed away the day after they returned home.

After her mother’s death, with her father already struggling to care for his seven other children, Malita’s elder sister tried to take on her care but without her mother’s milk, she became increasingly malnourished and vulnerable. It was at this point – at just 18 days old - that Malita was brought to Open Arms, weighing a tiny 1.28kg.

Malita 8

Worryingly underweight and struggling to feed, she was admitted to hospital shortly after for rehydration before returning to Open Arms Infant Home in Blantyre.  Here, her dedicated team of caregivers continued on with 'kangaroo care' (close skin-to-skin contact for premature babies) and closely monitored her development and progress across all key milestones, making sure she gained adequate weight. 

Caregiver Florence recounted, "When Malita came everyone was very worried about her. She was very frail. Her [house] mother never wanted to take her eyes off of her.”

Little steps forward

As time went by, Malita went from strength to strength and both her team of caregivers, as well as her father (who visited her twice a month), delighted in every milestone she reached.

From learning to sit, to growing teeth, to feeding herself, to taking those first steps and babbling her first words, every step of her growth and development was cause for huge celebration.

Her father admitted he had initially lost hope for her survival and has been thrilled to see her overcome her difficult start to life. He is so grateful for the round-the-clock monitoring and care his daughter has received from Matron Eniffer and her team at the Infant Home.

Malita 2

A miraculous recovery

“When she was asleep I would go frequently to see if she was still breathing and sometimes I would carry her to observe her closely. She is a miracle.” - Elizabeth (one of Malita's main caregivers at Blantyre Infant Home)

Looking ahead

Malita turned two years old this past August, which marked even more significant milestones. Not only was she able to come off the medicine she had required from birth, but the team started preparing both her and her father for Malita's long-awaited return home!

After doing some renovations to prepare for her coming, Malita's father was overjoyed to recently welcome his little girl back into her family home. Thanks to his regular visits to the Infant Home, they have a strong bond, which has made Malita's transition home smooth and successful. She is well settled and has even started attending a local Nursery School!

The Community Outreach Team will regularly visit the family, supporting them with advice, medical checks and essentials - ensuring Malita continues to thrive in her new home setting. 

Malita Now

Can you help more children like Malita reach miraculous milestones?

Open Arms exists to stand in the gap for children such as Malita, helping them survive their difficult beginnings and then supporting their return to family so they can grow up happy and healthy in a loving home, with the hope of a brighter future.

None of this would be possible, however, without your help. 

If you can, please support today either with a one-off gift, sponsorship or regular donation so together, we can continue to be there for Malawi's vulnerable children. 

Thank you!

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