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Update Happy Baby Congo: Happy Baby Headquarters in Beni

Happy Baby single room office In September we finished working on our single room Happy Baby office that provides enough space for holding meetings and storing our materials. In the office we have a table and chairs, along with shelving and wooden boxes for storing carriers and a few binders for keeping valuable documents such as receipts. Now all of …

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Update: Happy Baby Beni, DRC: Training additional tailors

Another remarkable update from our newest project in the Congo is the recruitment of five new tailors. The new tailors are being taught to make the Happy Baby Carrier by our professionally trained tailors who learned from Josephine in August. The entire month of September was about beginning production and training the new team. This has increased the number of …

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Update: Happy Baby Beni, DRC – Production of carriers

Much activity has taken place in Beni, since our Congo Project Launch back in August. Production of carriers: We started producing baby carriers almost immediately. We couldn’t wait long, because many women in the community started asking when the carriers will be available and others were calling to say they were ready to buy carriers. Five tailors are present at …

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Tuesday, August 29: Village Bus Ride

VILLAGE BUS RIDE: Around noon, Josephine, Philippe Kasondoli, our Happy Baby model father, and our cameraman  joined the bus that was going to collect women from different villages for the launching ceremony. The bus went to Oicha, Mbau, Mavivi and Ngadi: all villages surrounding Beni town. On the bus Josephine had a great opportunity to talk to them about Happy Baby …

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Tuesday, August 29th: MORNING HOSPITAL VISIT:

  Visit Nyankunde Hospital- the big public hospital in Beni. This morning our two Project Leaders visited mothers at the antenatal and postnatal clinic at Centre Medical Evangelic (CME) which is one of the largest hospital in the town, and introduced the Happy Baby carrier and its benefits. Josephine made a short presentation for pregnant women and got very positive feedback …

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Monday, August 28: MAVIVI VILLAGE VISIT:

Community Meeting in Mavivi Village: Today we also learned that women from Mavivi, a village located 12 km north of Beni, had been waiting for us to learn about the Happy Baby project. Around 5 pm, Josephine, Philippe and Noe drove quickly to Mavivi and met the women and talked to them about Happy Baby.  Most of these women are …

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Monday, August 28: VISIT TO CENTER MARKET:

Monday, August 28 VISIT TO CENTER MARKET: After having the authorization from the office of culture and arts of Beni, we took our local HB team to the center market to meet women and men. So many people wanted to hear about Happy Baby!  They were so excited about the project, and each one was proposing their prices of the …

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Sunday, August 27: Community Education

Meeting with Happy baby pilot couples   On Sunday afternoon, Josephine met with all the Happy Baby Ambassador couples at Bethesda Counseling Center and shared about her experiences with Happy Baby from Uganda. The parents were encouraged to reach many more other parents. Mothers noted that the baby carrier is of great help and they are happy to see their …

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Saturday, August 26: MARKET TRIP: RESEARCH

MARKET TRIP: RESEARCH Together, we decided to go to the Beni market to show them to do some marketing and research.  Women at the market loved the carriers and freely shared with us how much they could afford for the carrier.  At the market we collected feedback on pricing that ranged from $3 to $12. All of Beni tailors and …

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Presenting Happy Baby at Studio X

Happy Baby Team was invited to present our design process in the opening of Studio X İstanbul, an off-campus event and co-working space run by the Columbia University GSAPP, part of the Studio-X Global Initiative. We would like to thanks Studio X, both for giving us the opportunity to reach their guests, and for creating this amazing space in the heart …

Follow-up Meetings

Thanks to the mobilization by the Happy Baby Village Tailors and Village Health Team Members, families with babies and pregnant women were identified and invited to meetings in each twelve village. Follow-up meetings started with an open discussion on general issues about baby care, feeding, hygiene, elimination communication and their relation to the importance of carrying babies. The families who …

Happy Baby Stitchery Launch

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/67050204 w=625] Happy Baby Stitchery Launch from Happy Baby on Vimeo. The first Happy Baby Stitchery is opened with a launch event, as a big step our pilot program, taking place in Nkokonjeru, Central Uganda! After inviting everyone from the twelve neighbor villages through mobilizers, announcements from local radio and prayer places, the launch event hosted over 300 people. …

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Community Meeting

  Following the advice of the local leaders in Nkokonjeru, we held a presentation followed by an open discussion in the community center. Parents from the twelve villages were invited by mobilizers who spread the word from home to home, local radio, church and mosque announcements. More than 150 parents and babies attended and participated in the meeting where HB …

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Happy Baby Ambassadors

Happy Baby Ambassadors are selected families from each village in Nkokonjeru to receive a Happy Baby carrier together with the first Baby Carrying Benefits training. Their role in the process includes using the carrier in long term during their daily activities, giving us feedback on possible improvements, spreading the knowledge of benefits of baby carrying in their village and allowing …

Time to mobilize!

Spreading out information about Happy Baby pilot project and knowledge on baby wearing benefits in Nkokonjeru requires a well-structured mobilization with the help of recommended community members. Meetings started with the hospital where doctors and nurses showed a great interest and where Happy Baby is now invited to present the baby carriers and baby wearing benefits posters on immunization days, …

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The effects of baby carrying on Developmental Hip Dysplasma

We found some good information here about the effects of baby carrying on Developmental Hip Dysplasma.     Apparently in African culture, the baby is carried on the back in the correct hip position, so DDH is uncommon in rural African communities.

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Interviewing parents

Above shows a world map of people and places we have so far interviwed and an interesting quote from our conversation. Click to view the image in big size

Market Research in Turkey

Going from one shopping mall to another, we tried to find inspiration from all kinds of baby products in the Turkish market. We talked to the sales people and parents about what they look for when they shop for their babies.

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Sorting traditional baby carriers

We have been sorting the traditional baby carriers such as Mei Tai, Onbuhimo, Podaegi, etc according to their patterns. Now we need to compare them in different aspects, but which are the most relevant for our project: the origin, possibility of positions, use of materials… We had a brainstorming session where we decided that the different positions and their distribution …

North Turkish Way of Carrying Babies

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HygSzFwLq_o&w=420&h=315] Turkey’s Changemakers – Fark Yaratanlar – Cavidan Yılmaz I just saw this video, one of the series of ‘Turkish Changemakers,’ and got shocked at how Northern Turkish women carry their kids! Please see the details in the 3rd minute! The video does not talk about about carrying babies; you can watch it with subtitles which you can turn on from …

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Wednesday, October 25: Visit to the Tamale Regional Hospital

Happy Baby supports the sustainable development goals defined by the UN.  Especially Goal #1: No Poverty, Goal #3: Good Health and Well Being, Goal #5: Gender Equality and Goal #12: Responsible Consumption and Production that are directly related to the Happy Baby project. Therefore, it is important for us to visit health facilities, clinics and hospitals in the rural areas, …

Tuesday, October 24: Dancing in Tamale

Happy Baby is visiting a potential new partner in Tamale located in the North of Ghana. The project teaches young women how to sew, so that they can make a future income for themselves in an environment where youth unemployment is very high.  The project also serves as a youth cultural centre in the community. Young people come here to …

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Tuesday, October 24: Visit in Tamale, Ghana

Today, Happy Baby made a visit to Tamale, the capital of the Northern Region of Ghana, located 370 miles north of Accra.. Although Tamale is considered the fastest growing City in West Africa, this region has traditionally been marginalized compared to the south. Infrastructure is weak here and unemployment is high. The most fertile place in all of Ghana, the …

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Thursday, October 19: Happy Baby Presentation to Pebi Village Elders

Today Happy Baby’s Camilla presented and overview of our programs for the village elders. She was assisted by two Danish social workers (Camilla and Isabella) who are doing their internship in Ghana. It has always been the heart of Happy Baby’s work to communicate and discuss open and honestly with the communities about the project and get their feedback. Local …

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Thursday, October 19: Village School, Pebi, Ghana

Travelling with our partner organization 100% to the Children, Happy Baby’s Camilla made a visit to the Footprint Child Development Centre (FCDC) – a mix of a daycare institution and a part time school in Pebi. There are about 100 families, which have settled in this area within the last 30 years. Pebi is marginalized in terms of location, absence …

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Ghana: Thursday, October 19th: Visit to the village Pebi

Today, Happy Baby’s Camilla is visiting Pebi, a marginalized, rural community on the coast.  About 100 kilometers west of Ghana’s capital city of Accra, the village Pebi has no water, electricity or transport roads. Complicating the lives of these est. 600 Pebi residents even further is the fact  that they relocated over the last 30 years from the Volta region …

Abigail & Andrew: CAS Ghana

Abigail is a 19 year old street mother and her son Andrew is 5 months. The father of her baby is also living on the streets of Accra, Ghana. She has been coming to CAS since 2013. She breastfeeds Andrew – and likes to have him close. The Happy Baby Carrier can help Abigail with mobility on the streets, breastfeeding …

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Trip to Ghana: Tuesday, October 17th: Meeting at C.A.S.

Camilla spent the day at the Catholic Action for Street children (CAS) facility in Accra, Ghana. CAS operates in the city as a “day facility”, meaning that they are closed from the evening until the next morning.  Many children, including young mothers, come during the day to rest or to do vocational trainings. Apart from sewing, CAS offers trainings in hairdressing and …

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Trip to Ghana: Monday, October 16

Today, Happy Baby is visiting CAS Ghana based in the capital of Accra. Catholic Action for Street children (CAS) is a charity day center which advises and educates children and youth living on street. The most recent statistics show that there are around 90,000 out of school youth currently living in Accra. Happy Baby is collaborating with CAS to teach young …

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Home-made Carrier

Semra Teyze is yet another Happy Baby hero! Grandmother of one of our test users, baby Yunus, she has tried wearing Happy Baby Carrier before and was excited to replicate one for Yunus. She was given the Happy Baby Templates to replicate a carrier using her sewing machine at home. Keep being happy Yunus!

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Jean Charlot

As we work on the computer to analyze our findings from the Uganda trip and prepare a research report, we have stumbled upon an amazing artist: Jean Charlot (1898-1979). Apparently one of his favorite subjects was women carrying babies traditionally.

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When words are not enough

Most siblings share the responsibility of taking care of babies in Ugandan families. During our siblings workshop in Nkokonjeru, we asked five kids to draw what comes up to their mind when they think of new ways to carry babies. You can have a look at their pretty pictures below.

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Halloween Costume Inspiration for Babywearing Parents

For our babywearing friends around the world who are getting ready to celebrate All Hallows’ Eve, here is a collection of our favorite babywearing costumes! 1. Love Grows Here. 2. This dad really outdid himself! 3. Sweet little honey bee 4. He doesn’t look grouchy to us! 5. They can do it! 6. E-i-e-i-o  7. This family is on fire! …

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Presenting Happy Baby at Studio X

Happy Baby Team was invited to present our design process in the opening of Studio X İstanbul, an off-campus event and co-working space run by the Columbia University GSAPP, part of the Studio-X Global Initiative. We would like to thanks Studio X, both for giving us the opportunity to reach their guests, and for creating this amazing space in the heart …

Follow-up Meetings

Thanks to the mobilization by the Happy Baby Village Tailors and Village Health Team Members, families with babies and pregnant women were identified and invited to meetings in each twelve village. Follow-up meetings started with an open discussion on general issues about baby care, feeding, hygiene, elimination communication and their relation to the importance of carrying babies. The families who …

Happy Baby Stitchery Launch

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/67050204 w=625] Happy Baby Stitchery Launch from Happy Baby on Vimeo. The first Happy Baby Stitchery is opened with a launch event, as a big step our pilot program, taking place in Nkokonjeru, Central Uganda! After inviting everyone from the twelve neighbor villages through mobilizers, announcements from local radio and prayer places, the launch event hosted over 300 people. …

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Community Meeting

  Following the advice of the local leaders in Nkokonjeru, we held a presentation followed by an open discussion in the community center. Parents from the twelve villages were invited by mobilizers who spread the word from home to home, local radio, church and mosque announcements. More than 150 parents and babies attended and participated in the meeting where HB …

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Happy Baby Ambassadors

Happy Baby Ambassadors are selected families from each village in Nkokonjeru to receive a Happy Baby carrier together with the first Baby Carrying Benefits training. Their role in the process includes using the carrier in long term during their daily activities, giving us feedback on possible improvements, spreading the knowledge of benefits of baby carrying in their village and allowing …

Time to mobilize!

Spreading out information about Happy Baby pilot project and knowledge on baby wearing benefits in Nkokonjeru requires a well-structured mobilization with the help of recommended community members. Meetings started with the hospital where doctors and nurses showed a great interest and where Happy Baby is now invited to present the baby carriers and baby wearing benefits posters on immunization days, …

See All Nkokonjeru Pilot Posts

Tailor Made

During the final refinement phase of Happy Baby Carrier, we have been busy with developing the templates which can be used by tailors to replicate carriers fast and easily. The first tailor to use these templates and produce our carriers is Selahattin Usta. He has the task to make 20 carriers which we will take to Uganda and distribute to our initial …

Happy Baby Rebecca

After returning from Uganda, we have been developing the Happy Baby carrier with the help of families volunteering to be test users. We met baby Rebecca when she was only a month old and she was brave enough to try out the first prototypes of Happy Baby! During the past months, Rebecca and her family was visited several times as the …

Happy babies and parents

Meet our two new models – ‘V-carrier’ and ‘High-carrier.’ Below are some photos during our meetings with parents and babies who kindly tried out, compared, and gave their feedback on the two new designs. With the contribution of happy mothers, fathers and babies throughout Uganda, Turkey and Denmark, we are continuing the concept development!

Special thanks to Nadia and Jade

When developing a carrier, it is a must to obtain the comfort and safety of the baby. Nadia, founder of SlyngeSkolen, is our beloved expert who gives baby carrying education to mothers and fathers all over Denmark. Last week she generously dedicated her time for meeting us and giving feedback on ‘Tied up.’ So far we have given a lot …

Designing on site

‘Tied up’ Field trips to Lira and Kasese gave the opportunity to test some of our prototypes and get instant feedback from mothers and fathers. With this motivation, we decided to spend few days in Kampala and work on an improved carried with their suggestions, before going on our final research trip. The very first carrier we designed in Uganda …

Concepts to test in Uganda

Below concepts are created by improving the initial prototypes of the past months. Starting from the left, ‘Lift up’ gives a back pack feeling and aims to allow adjustments on the carrier as the baby grow up.  ‘Net’ includes a mosquito net and uses three identical straps of fabric. The last one ‘Oldskool’ is an improved version of the traditional wrap that puts the weight of …

Overview of all prototypes

After bringing all the prototypes together and categorizing the post-its, we decided to combine the positive features in 3-4 different final concepts to take with us to Uganda.

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Article on New Vision

Today New Vision Uganda has published an article on Josephine Nalugo, our research and pilot partner, about her experiences with building Children in Africa Breastfeeding Support and her collaboration with Happy Baby. Check out the article here.

Trip to Kiryandongo

In collaboration with Real Medicine Foundation, last week Happy Baby has been on a trip to  Panyadoli Vocational Technical Institute in Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement in Bweyale, Uganda. This camp is a UNHCR managed refugee settlement that provides shelter, land and support for more than 25,000, comprised of Ugandan IDPs and refugees from Kenya, Congo, Rwanda, Burundi and Sudan. The program …

Follow-up Meetings

Thanks to the mobilization by the Happy Baby Village Tailors and Village Health Team Members, families with babies and pregnant women were identified and invited to meetings in each twelve village. Follow-up meetings started with an open discussion on general issues about baby care, feeding, hygiene, elimination communication and their relation to the importance of carrying babies. The families who …

Happy Baby Stitchery Launch

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/67050204 w=625] Happy Baby Stitchery Launch from Happy Baby on Vimeo. The first Happy Baby Stitchery is opened with a launch event, as a big step our pilot program, taking place in Nkokonjeru, Central Uganda! After inviting everyone from the twelve neighbor villages through mobilizers, announcements from local radio and prayer places, the launch event hosted over 300 people. …

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Community Meeting

  Following the advice of the local leaders in Nkokonjeru, we held a presentation followed by an open discussion in the community center. Parents from the twelve villages were invited by mobilizers who spread the word from home to home, local radio, church and mosque announcements. More than 150 parents and babies attended and participated in the meeting where HB …

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Happy Baby Ambassadors

Happy Baby Ambassadors are selected families from each village in Nkokonjeru to receive a Happy Baby carrier together with the first Baby Carrying Benefits training. Their role in the process includes using the carrier in long term during their daily activities, giving us feedback on possible improvements, spreading the knowledge of benefits of baby carrying in their village and allowing …

Time to mobilize!

Spreading out information about Happy Baby pilot project and knowledge on baby wearing benefits in Nkokonjeru requires a well-structured mobilization with the help of recommended community members. Meetings started with the hospital where doctors and nurses showed a great interest and where Happy Baby is now invited to present the baby carriers and baby wearing benefits posters on immunization days, …

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When words are not enough

Most siblings share the responsibility of taking care of babies in Ugandan families. During our siblings workshop in Nkokonjeru, we asked five kids to draw what comes up to their mind when they think of new ways to carry babies. You can have a look at their pretty pictures below.

Mweraba!

After the unforgettable five weeks experience in Uganda, we had to say goodbye -for now- to our team mate Josephine and her hospitable family. Love you and will miss you all!

Final field study held in Nkokonjeru

Only two hours drive from Kampala, it was great to be back in nature in Nkokonjeru. That day, a local hair saloon was the space arranged to hold the workshops with urban parents. After covering the mirrors and hair style posters, the room was ready to talk about baby carrying. Meeting mothers in urban Nkokonjeru The morning workshop was carried on …

Designing on site

‘Tied up’ Field trips to Lira and Kasese gave the opportunity to test some of our prototypes and get instant feedback from mothers and fathers. With this motivation, we decided to spend few days in Kampala and work on an improved carried with their suggestions, before going on our final research trip. The very first carrier we designed in Uganda …

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Field trip to Kasese

Meeting rural families under a tree The first workshop in Kasese took place at the foot hills of Mountain Rwenzori at a heath care center. Mothers and fathers coming from different rural neighborhoods were already sitting under a big tree, waiting for the workshop to begin. Many of the mothers came along with their babies, which made it very convenient …

Field trip to Lira

Happy Baby’s first field study is held in Lira, a small bicycle city in central Uganda. After a six hours bus journey from the complexity of Kampala, Lira welcomed us with its adorable nature, hospitable local people, chubby single floor buildings, bike traffic and a lot of mosquitos. With a good sleep, we were ready to learn about how Luo …

First days in Kampala

It is a pleasure to be welcomed by our beautiful host and team mate Josephine in Uganda. After meeting her family, we spent an evening discussing about our research details for the coming days. The next day, she showed us how to carry Mette with different traditional Ugandan wraps and commented on the different prototypes we brought. Already on the first …

Off to Uganda

Finally we managed to pack everything and created a mobile workshop to take with us to Uganda.

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Trip to Ghana: Tuesday, October 17th: Meeting at C.A.S.

Camilla spent the day at the Catholic Action for Street children (CAS) facility in Accra, Ghana. CAS operates in the city as a “day facility”, meaning that they are closed from the evening until the next morning.  Many children, including young mothers, come during the day to rest or to do vocational trainings. Apart from sewing, CAS offers trainings in hairdressing and …

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