A good number of Sierra Leonean children Saturday received clothing materials from Europhia International, an organization complementing government's free health care scheme in Sierra Leone.
In a country where cost is the biggest barrier to accessing health care, the introduction of free services for the largest group of people such as lactating mothers, pregnant women and children under five that need it most, is a huge step towards reducing infant and maternal mortality rates.
In 2008, only one-quarter of all births took place in a health facility in Sierra Leone.
According to a Demographic and Health Survey, 42 percent of births were delivered by a skilled provider.
The lifetime risk of a woman dying from complications in pregnancy and childbirth is one in eight (Historically, Sierra Leoneans have on average visited health facilities less than once a year) - because of the cost.
Just when a Sierra Leonean humanitarian organization called Europhia International visited homes of lactating mothers, pregnant women and children under five at Hamilton village west of Freetown, it saw the need to complement government's efforts in the free health care system thus providing free clothing for the affected children.
Hamilton, a village made up of hundreds of Sierra Leoneans, time past, has had no option but visit nearby health posts in Ogoo Farm and surrounding to eagerly seek medical attention for their loved children.
But things eventually changed shortly after the village clinic was revamped and staffed by about three or more health officers including Madam Pratt, a senior nursing sister.
To this end came the unbelievable distribution of free clothing to beneficiaries in Hamilton village.
Europhia International project was established in 2010 by a Sierra Leonean called Pauline Pamela Pratt, who now doubles as the Executive Director.
The project is a non-profit making organization aimed at improving the health conditions of Sierra Leonean children, increase access to health services by providing basic preventive health services to communities in need and focusing on the area of reproductive health, maternal health, child health and social services.
"Today, I feel proud distributing clothing to needy children within the Hamilton community," nurse Pratt said.
"Such is in line with a seminar held last year 2010 by the executive director in which parents were trained on how to take care of their pregnancies and children. They were also issued with certificates of participation though."
Mariama Jalloh, mother of a boy child Mambo Pensular said she is thankful to Euphoria International and nurses working at the village clinic.
"Now that my child has received free clothing, it means that my money is saved. All I need do is use some for his feeding and welfare," Mariama said. "We the parents say plenty thank you to the management of Europhia. We hope they will continue to do more for us in the coming years."