Teach Traditional Ethiopian Midwives to Save Lives

 
$10,373
$4,627
Raised
Remaining
Jun 12, 2012

Coffee for a Cause

Ethiopian HEW, pouring coffee
Ethiopian HEW, pouring coffee

The women sit in a circle facing one another smiling and laughing. They are all farmers from the same rural community in Kola Tembien, Ethiopia who have volunteered to be here. In the middle of the circle a young woman begins to slowly pour dark coffee into glasses, paying special care to avoid any grinds. These coffee ceremonies are a traditional part of Ethiopian culture and social life, but today’s ceremony has a special focus and a specific goal.

The young woman leading the ceremony is a Health Extension Worker (HEW), a government-deployed health care provider posted in this rural region of Ethiopia to assist the community with basic healthcare needs. VSI has enlisted the help of thousands of HEWs on the provision of life-saving misoprostol tablets. Today, this young HEW will use the coffee ceremony as a means to lead an important discussion with the women of her village. The ceremony is a conduit to create a safe space for women to share their experiences with reproductive health services and serve as peer advisors for one another. Hours later, after the third cup of coffee, the women have openly shared their concerns, challenges and success stories.

VSI-sponsored coffee ceremonies, much like this one, took place in four health posts across Kola Tembien, and many more are planned. In the last four ceremonies over 120 women participated, offering their perspectives and experiences with reproductive health. The encouraging news is that women are aware of the services offered and the importance of taking advantage of them. The disheartening fact is that these services are not universally available throughout the country or are simply too far to reach for many women in remote areas. Our mission is aimed at increasing access to essential medical services and supplies so that all women – no matter where they live – have the opportunity to empower and protect themselves. Your support to this project means that VSI can work to improve women’s health and reach more women with life-saving medicines and services.

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Funded

Thanks to 124 donors like you, a total of $10,373 was raised for this project on GlobalGiving. Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.

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Organization

Project Leader

Allison Boiles

Communications Specialist
Anaheim, CA United States

Where is this project located?

Map of Teach Traditional Ethiopian Midwives to Save Lives