Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and as we carefully pick out the perfect gifts and make plans to share meals with loved ones, let’s pause for a moment to reflect on how the Million Moms Fund has been impacting moms near and far.
Thanks to your generosity and support…
How about we come together to celebrate the moms in our lives and show some love to moms we’ve never met? You can learn more about how you can be a part of the Million Moms Challenge here!
Welcome to a new year and 365 (or now 357!) more days to show appreciation for moms around the world. As 2013 begins, it’s time to look back at what we’ve accomplished at the Million Moms Fund to date.
Thanks to you, we’ve raised $126,204 for mothers and children, from Swaziland to Afghanistan. That’s $126,204 toward the global elimination of maternal and neonatal tetanus. It’s $126,204 for struggling mothers like Mbali Mkhatjwa, a 23-year-old, HIV-positive, mother of two in Swaziland. It’s $126,204 to train midwives and clinical workers who can save more of the 177,000 women who die each year in pregnancy and childbirth in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Want to get 2013 off to a great start? Make a resolution to help women and children survive and thrive. It’s as simple as heading to the Million Moms Challenge page and choosing a way to take action. Or “like” us on Facebook and spread the word to your family and friends. Or follow us on Twitter at @AMillionMoms to learn more about our work supporting healthy moms and babies.
Thank you for supporting the Million Moms Fund. 2012 was an incredible year. Here’s to saving, supporting, and nurturing more moms in 2013!
You don’t have to be a mom to help a mom. You just have to be one in a million.
The UN Millennium Development Goals are due to expire in less than three years. As the end date approaches, many are wondering – how close are we to achieving our goals for global development? Moms may be particularly curious. After all, half of the goals are directly related to their wellbeing and the wellbeing of their kids. Two focus on health: goal #4 is reduce child mortality and goal #5 is improve maternal health. With that in mind, let’s look at how Million Moms Fund organizations are working toward these critical goals.
One child dies every 20 seconds from a disease that could have been prevented by a vaccine.
In response to these utterly preventable deaths, the UN Foundation’s Shot@Life campaign launched Blogust during the month of August – a relay of inspirational blog posts by influential bloggers and parents. Every comment on a post initiated a $20 donation, the same amount of money it takes to immunize a child with four essential life-saving vaccines. Shot@Life reached their initial goal of 1,500 comments and $30,000 in donations in just a week! By the end of the month Blogust had received 10,000 comments, enough to protect 10,000 children from diarrhea, pneumonia, polio, and measles.
James Kainerugaba is a pastor of the Kakooge Full Gospel Church in Kirowooza Village, Uganda. For the past 12 years he’s been a member of his Village Health Team, supported by AMREF. AMREF works toward achieving MDGs #4 and #5 by promoting child and maternal health throughout Africa, often by training Village Health Team workers like James. “We were given a lot of health education, which helped me understand that most health issues can be dealt with at community level,” he says.
One woman who listened to James is Jesca Nzamukosha. The 35-year-old mother of six had her first three children at home, but the youngest three were delivered at the Kakooge Health Centre. “Before AMREF started working here with James, most of us had our babies at home,” says Jesca. “We were not tested for HIV or malaria, even when we were pregnant, because very few of us ever went to the health centre. We did not know how important it was for us to be checked.” James is proud of the work he is doing in his community. “Just visit any health facility and you will see the increased number of pregnant women there. This is because of our referrals.”
For all of the successes, there is still much more to be done to come close to achieving the Millennium Goals and improving the health of mothers and children. What can you do to help more mothers like Jesca and their children? Learn more about being part of the global community of moms here.
Mother’s Day in the U.S. was this past Sunday. The weekend was dedicated to celebrating all the amazing women in our lives, and we got flowers, went to brunch, and reveled in our families' health and well-being. Because you supported the Million Moms Challenge Fund, you know that for many mothers around the world, days like Mother's Day just don't happen. But progress is being made. Just today the UN announced that maternal mortality in developing countries is down.
So let’s take a look at how the Million Moms Challenge has been impacting mothers in the developing world.
In rural Africa, mothers walk for miles to meet with health workers who can provide them with essential health care services, including prenatal visits and vaccinations for their children. It is heartbreaking when the health workers don’t show up. In the past year, Riders for Health established a new professional driving school in Kenya. The school offers training courses that equip health workers with necessary skills in riding and driving to ensure that they have the capacity to reach more mothers, more often. When barriers due to distance and a lack of transportation are removed, health workers are mobilized to identify potential problems early and to provide women with the information and resources needed to have a healthy pregnancy.
Nokodwa lives in South Africa in a township outside Cape Town called Khayelitsha. She is HIV-positive. For Nokodwa, Mother’s Day isn’t just about flowers or candy, it’s about life—hers and her children’s. The organization mothers2mothers trains and hires mothers to be Mentor Mothers. Mentor Mothers provide knowledge, guidance, and support to HIV-positive mothers, all of which are integral to helping mothers just like Nokoda to have healthy babies and to stay alive to raise them. Nokodwa is now a Mentor Mother herself and strives to bring the gift of life and hope to other women.
Every day is Mother’s Day.
We invite you to join us in honoring the incredible moms around the world who strive selflessly to have a healthy pregnancy, a safe birth, and a baby who will survive and thrive. You can learn more about being a part of the global community of moms here!
Last Thursday was International Women’s Day. For two weeks each year, world leaders come together to discuss the status of women and girls around the world. On March 2nd I joined the Commision on the Status of Women conversation at the UN, in support of the UN Secretary-General’s Every Woman Every Child initiative. The session, called “Keeping Promises and Measuring Results,” focused on accountability taking responsibility and reporting back on what governments and international organizations are doing upholding their commitments to improve the health and lives of women and girls. Speaking from the floor, World YWCA General Secretary and Commissioner Nyaradzayi Gumbonzvanda made an impassioned plea that women must be a driver not beneficiary of that accountability. “We are tired of dying. We are tired of burying each other on the way to the clinic,” she said, urging greater health access for rural women. Commemorating International Women’s Day means answering that call. It means pushing for education, safe pregnancy, safe labor and delivery, and healthy babies. Every day. As we raise our voices, we create more space for others to be heard—those who don’t have a voice. Yet. What can you do to honor women every day? Take action.
Because every day is International Women's Day.
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