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Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines

by Mercy In Action Vineyard, INC
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Birth Center Saves MotherBaby Lives in Philippines
Midwife, Mother and Baby in the community
Midwife, Mother and Baby in the community

Spring is here and all things are becoming new. And Mercy In Action is in the building process again! We are so excited to be building a new birth center and clinic in an area outside of Manila, for a midwife that was relocated to the area after a fire destroyed her entire urban community. Now many of the families have relocated to this new area, and will have their own midwife back again. It is hard to convey how happy it makes the pregnant women to know that the familiar midwife they know and love from their former community is moving into the resettlement area with them in time to assist at their upcoming birth! 

Right now our midwife is working in the middle of the construction mess to offer prenatal exams in temporary space,  but soon the lovely new birth center will be ready for her to move into. Your contributions have helped greatly with our building project; we expect to be moved in before any of the current patients reach their due date.

Thank you to each and every person who donates to Mercy In Action through Global Giving. You make it possible for families living in very difficult and unsettling circumstances  to have quality maternity care provided to them free of cost, in clean, beautiful facilities, with kind and well trained midwives.

If anyone would like to donate new or very gently used baby clothes, blankets or knit caps for us to give free to each new baby, you may mail them to this address:

Mercy In Action
c/o Cecille Manaois
Phase 6-B, Block 7 Lot 6
Towerville Brgy, Gaya Gaya
City of San Jose Del Monte
Bulacan 3023, Philippines 

Thank you and Lord Bless you!

"Whoever is kind to the needy honors God" Proverbs 14:31 

Temporary space to conduct prenatal exams
Temporary space to conduct prenatal exams
Kitchen area before photo
Kitchen area before photo
Kitchen area after renovation photo
Kitchen area after renovation photo
Happy to be getting a local birth center soon
Happy to be getting a local birth center soon

Links:

Vicki, Cecille & Tano; truck of medical supply
Vicki, Cecille & Tano; truck of medical supply

A new Mercy In Action sponsored Birthing Home is rising from the ashes:

A Mercy In Action birthing home in Manila run by Filipina Midwife Cecille was tragically burned in a fire in 2011; now we are building a new birth center, which Cecille will run, and the best part is, she is finally able to go home to serve her community again! The truck to furnish Cecille's new birthing home has departed and she is setting up a facility again!

Cecille is a wonderful midwife who has worked with Mercy In Action for the past 18 years. She is dedicated and knowledgeable, but what the mothers in her care love most is that she is both kind and calm. She quietly stands guardian to the natural process of birth, not interrupting or intervening unless there is a problem.
Cecille says " Birth is normal most of the time, we need to wait patiently. But if there is a problem, we will respond". This is a great example of the kind of care that women get from Mercy In Action trained midwives.

As with all of the birth centers Mercy In Action builds and supports, this one will be free of charge to the parents, will follow the 10 Steps of the International MotherBaby Childbirth Initiative, and will be faith based. We will take care of all pregnant women and babies who come through the door, regardless of their ability to pay or their ethnicity.

Thank you to our faithful supporters for helping us help the poor families of the Philippines. Do you have any questions, suggestions or comments? Please email us at info@mercyinaction.com

Cecille with pregnant woman in her care
Cecille with pregnant woman in her care

Links:

Happy Family
Happy Family

Expecting a new child was not a new experience for Mary Grace. She had carried 6 other pregnancies to term and had given birth to each of them in the local government hospital. Now expecting for the 7th time Mary Grace was hoping for a new experience. An experience that was everything that it was meant to be. 

Mary Grace remembered well each of her other births. She remembered the pain of the contractions and the intensity of the labor. But what she remembered most was the feelings she had as she labored alone. She was scared and did not have a labor companion to comfort or reassure her. She remembered the rough treatment she encountered and the lack of compassion she felt from her care providers. She had wanted this day to be special but each time, she felt alone. 

Now expecting her 7th baby any day she was hoping for more. She had heard about the birth center in her home town that provided care for expectant mothers. She had begun care and was surprised to find that everyone at the birth center was genuinely excited about her baby who would be joining her family later this year. She found warmth and compassion and most of all she was pleased to see the clean, cheerful, and well stocked birth room. 

When the pain of her contractions began she made her way to the center. She was allowed to have her husband join her for the labor. She was relaxed and her labor progressed quickly as she received the supportive, kind and compassionate care she had longed for at each of her other deliveries. 

Mary Grace gave birth to a baby boy and wrote the following message to the staff of the birth center. "Thank you very much for a very loving and caring experience. This childbirth was the best. I had a very wonderful and memorable experience giving birth to my baby. I will keep the memory of it for the rest of my life... thank you thank you!"

Not only was Mary Grace's experience a testimony to the care provided by this birth center it was also the only care she would have had access to. As a low income mother she would not have been able to afford the birth fees at the local hospital for this birth, and was considering giving birth at home unattended. Due to the accessibility of a clinic which had removed the barrier of fees for service she was able to have the best birth experience of her life. 

Thank you for supporting kind, compassionate, safe care for mothers and babies in the Philippines. We could not do what we do if it wasn't for the support of individuals like you, who truly want to make a difference in birth outcomes. 

Salamat, salamat po. (thank you, you thank you ma'am or sir)

*Names have been changed to protect the privacy of individuals.

Birthday.
Birthday.
A warm welcome for a new little one
A warm welcome for a new little one

Babies born with the help of the Mercy In Action midwives in the Philippines receive a warm welcome, no matter the time of day or night! Midwives are always available to assist a woman in labor, and help make her journey to motherhood more comfortable and empowering. No pregnant woman is ever turned away for lack of ability to pay.

The midwives are trained in all 10 steps of the International MotherBaby Childbirth Initiative (IMBCI), which outlines their care as respectful and evidence-based, and as a part of IMBCI, they are also trained in the UNICEF 10 Steps of Baby Friendly Care, which supports breastfeeding.

Because of their training through Mercy In Action, our midwives proudly reported back from a training they attended in Manila recently:  "We already knew and were implimenting the best-practice information that was being taught in our continuing education training. We Mercy midwives were so proud we knew that already."

Your generous donations help us to support the local midwives here in the Philippines, so that they are able to give a warm welcome to every newborn baby in their care!

Happy MotherBaby pair
Happy MotherBaby pair
Welcome to the world
Welcome to the world

Links:

Vicki, Jen and Jennifer at Women
Vicki, Jen and Jennifer at Women's Prison-Olongapo

A few days ago I went on an unusual home visit... to the provincial women's prison to provide prenatal care.

Society often forgets women in prison, even if she is pregnant, which here in the Philippines means she may not get any medical check-ups during pregnancy, and may be subject to disrespectful treatment during labor and birth from overworked and underpaid staff at an overcrowded government hospital.

Mercy In Action is changing that here in Olongapo by reaching out to the local women's prison to give free maternity care, including prenatal exams, pregnancy vitamins, pre-natal testing for HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis B, and medical treatment as needed. After the birth we go back to the prison to follow up with postpartum check-ups.

And when the woman goes into labor? Mercy In Action opens our gates wide to receive the prison wagon that pulls up and brings out the laboring woman in chains. The midwives lovingly greet her and take her inside, where all chains and handcuffs are removed, and she is treated with respect and dignity for the duration of her stay. Our center is the only place where a woman has unrestricted access to her newborn after birth, especially important for a mother who knows in a few days she has to let go. The female guards who accompany the mother often express their praise for this haven of rest and kindness, a kind of bubble for the mother and baby before reality intrudes again all too soon...

...For that is sad part of this story. Babies are not allowed to remain with their mothers once they go back to prison three days after the birth. Here again, Mercy In Action steps up to help arrange for the transfer of the newborn into safe care either with family or in a local baby home. And of course we offer comfort to the mother, who is often grieving to lose her baby in this way. Recently a woman told us "Mercy helped me during my worst time, I will not forget you".

What do you think? How can we help these women even more? We appreciate suggestions, comments and prayers from our donors. Please email us at info@mercyinaction.com. Without you we would not be able to conduct all the outreach we are currently involved in through our birth center. We love helping pregnant women in prison, and we hope you loved hearing about this compassionate outreach.

Midwife Jen gives so much love to all women!
Midwife Jen gives so much love to all women!

Links:

 

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Organization Information

Mercy In Action Vineyard, INC

Location: Boise, ID - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Vicki Penwell
Boise, ID United States
$81,917 raised of $99,000 goal
 
1,089 donations
$17,083 to go
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