Madeleine, 35, is a mother, saleswoman and secretary of the Community Organisation (CO) in Moupemou village in Atacora, Benin. Although she is not a qualified health worker or a doctor, in Moupemou she is regarded by the community as the official malaria doctor and everyone in the village knows that if someone gets malaria, they must quickly go to Madeleineâs home to receive treatment.
Madeleine was trained in malaria prevention by Plan International as part of the Palu-Alafia Project which aims to improve community malaria care for children under five in 14 health zones in Benin. The Palu-Alafia Project is coordinated by Catholic Relief Service (CRS) and implemented by Plan in nine municipalities in the region of Atacora, in the north of Benin. Once trained, the community volunteers such as Madeleine, are responsible for testing children for malaria, treating mild cases, referring serious cases to health centres and raising awareness amongst members of the community.