Work as a unit and focus on supporting and caring for each other as colleagues. That is the advice of the winning Community Health Worker (CHW) in the 2021 Super League, Dikeledi Sehlabane, to all other CHWs in the Grow Great Champions (GGC) network.
Sehlabane finished top of the table with a whopping 110 820 points. For her achievement, she won a cash prize of R2 500, a trophy, a GGC certificate and a trip to Cape Town with her team leader, Sr. Refilwe Khasalela, where they will meet colleagues from the Philani Maternal, Child Health and Nutrition Trust.
“My team helped me to win. We work as a unit in whatever we do. We love and support each other. If anybody has a problem, we sit down and try to find a solution to it, whether it’s personal or work related. We are very open with each other,” Sehlabane says.
She says the fact that they get along so well is what they will need to be successful, and she does not want this to change.
“Whenever I face a challenge, I know my team will be there to help me overcome it. I don’t think I would have won this award if it was not for them and my team leader. She is always willing to help me. I can call her at any time of the day or night, and she is always there to assist me.”
Sehlabane commends GGC for not only celebrating and supporting CHWs but for also teaching them many things about maternal and child health.
“GGC has taught me a lot of things including how to weigh children, monitor their growth and the importance of booking pregnancy early at the clinic. Some of us used to think that it was fine if mothers only went to the clinic five or six months into their pregnancies but Grow Great has showed us that its best to seek antenatal care early,” shares Sehlabane.
Another quality that helped Sehlabane win is her eagerness to help and her passion for working with people in her community.
“What I love about this job is working with parents. I have been fortunate because they have always given me a warm welcome when I visit their homes and explain to them why I need to monitor the growth of their children. I have established good relationships with many parents in the community and I’m confident it will help meet my targets of monitoring the growth of many children this year as well.”
What Sehlabane would like to see change in her community of Medingen is more mothers booking their pregnancies early at the clinic. “They shouldn’t be afraid to discuss their pregnancies with us, if they let us know early, we can connect them to antenatal care quickly.”
Your passion for helping your community makes you a champion, Dikeledi. Keep being a great example to all CHWs in South Africa. We are inspired by you. Continue to grow greatness!