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Aug 1, 2017

Fighting maternal mortality in Nigeria

Taking receipt of Birthing Kits
Taking receipt of Birthing Kits

A woman’s chance of dying from pregnancy and childbirth in Nigeria is 1 in 13. BKFA partner Prime Diamond Initiative for Community Health (PDICH), is an NGO, whose primary focus is to help reduce the very high maternal mortality rate.

It is saddening but a reality to learn that during childbirth women are often using unsterilised blades and knives to help birth their babies. All too often, these women are unassisted or assisted by an unskilled attendant such as a friend or neighbour.  Tragically, this means that infections are common, and that the maternal mortality rate is unacceptably high.

Birthing Kits include the basic supplies to help prevent infection, and following a delivery of kits from BKFA, we hear below how important a Birthing Kits was to one woman in the community of Kakura Village, Kaduna State.

Maimuna recounts how she lost her baby during an unassisted childbirth as she took the delivery while working on her farm.   She narrates in tears how she struggled to lay her wrapper on the ground, pushed out her baby alone and cut the cord with a cutlass. She testifies that after PDICH visited her community, conducted health talks and distributed BKFA delivery kits after demonstrating the use of each item, her recent baby was born using the kits and that he is healthy and free from infection.

The good news is that PDICH hosts health seminars partnering with local health centres, they conduct basic health checks, and then distribute the kits to women in their 3rd trimester. Where health centres are not within reach, PDICH give women the kits personally and advise them on the contents and use. Since many of these women are assisted by traditional birth attendants (TBAs), they are asked to ensure that the TBA is given the kit at the time of delivery.

PDICH say “We will not stop here, we shall continue to advocate on maternal health until there is zero maternal mortality in Nigeria because every life matters”.

May 9, 2017

Early Success with Birthing Kit supply in Cambodia

First mother to deliver a baby using birthing kit
First mother to deliver a baby using birthing kit

One Family at a Time in Cambodia is focussed on developing community capacity in vulnerable communities by working with the local health centre (Samroang Yea), and providing basic medical supplies and birthing kits. At Samroang Yea Health Centre, there are just four health workers who help to manage the delivery of around 300 babies every year.

In partnership with Birthing Kit Foundation Australia, 200 Birthing Kits were delivered in late 2016, which will be enough to last for around 9 months of births in the community.

One Family at a Time reports that kits are already been used to help deliver babies safely.

The woman pictured with her baby was the first to have the kits used for her birth! And, the two pregnant women pictured will be fortunate to have their delivery made safer by the use of the Birthing Kit. 

With early success, One Family at a Time will work with a new health centre in 2017 in the ChiKreng District where, with the support of Birthing Kit Foundation Australia, they hope to distribute further Birthing Kits.

Expectant mothers who will receive Birthing Kits
Expectant mothers who will receive Birthing Kits


Feb 10, 2017

Birthing Kits add value to empowering communities

Women with Birthing Kits
Women with Birthing Kits

Karel,  a long term friend and supporter of BKFA, has recently visited Uganda where she spent a week with BKFA field partners, the Rotary of Makindye.

She says:

“In one word it was inspiring.  Their commitment to serving the community, as well as the resources and passion they bring to making the world a better place is beyond impressive.

I was able to meet with the leadership and members of Rotary of Makindye to discuss the Birthing Kit and their very effective distribution. We spent two days travelling throughout rural areas meeting with women’s education projects and entrepreneurial ventures.  What is truly impressive as a public health initiative is that the Birthing Kit initiative is value-added into existing community programs where women are in leadership positions, are empowered and are mutually supportive.  The members of Rotary of Makindye are not outsiders; they are partners with these grass roots community groups and therefore respected and trusted.  The distribution of the kits is effectively interwoven into these community groups.  I could not imagine a more effective model for health status change on both a community and individual level.x

I cannot speak more highly of any group than Rotary of Makindye.  You can be assured that the kits donated by BFKA are part of dedicated and caring commitment to serve humanity and make the world a better place especially for women and children”

BKFA is thrilled to receive such positive feebdack from the field.

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