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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
Landfill Family
Landfill Family
My heart is torn in two directions as I visit my friend Jhun who lives on the local landfill. I am saddened by the conditions that she lives in and the poverty that surrounds her, and yet I am uplifted as I see her living out her choice to choose joy in the midst of adversity. 
 
Jhun spends her days rummaging through trash, hoping to find bottles, cans or plastic to be recycled. She spends her whole day outside toiling in the relentless sun and heat. If she is able to make the equivalent of 1USD she considers it a successful day and she is able to buy some rice and vegetables and possibly a bit of fish for her children’s dinner. 
 
I met Jhun when I was going door to door passing out children’s vitamin’s that were donated by a generous group of naturopathic physicians. She is now coming to our clinic for prenatal care and plans to deliver in our clinic as well. This is her fifth pregnancy and it will be the first time she has a trained birth attendant to assist her during her time of need. 
 
I know the numbers well. I share them with others when teaching about the desperate need for more midwives around the world. But the numbers become real when you have a lady standing before you. When you have seen her home and played with her children. 
 
Jhun came to the clinic severely anemic and I am so thankful for the donations that have allowed us to stock iron as well as prenatal vitamins. With a steady supply of iron and education about natural sources of iron, Jhun was able to dramatically raise her hemoglobin, which will greatly reduce her risk of excessive bleeding at the time of delivery. This is important because hemorrhage is the number one cause of maternal mortality in countries such as the Philippines. I am so thankful that we were able to help keep Jhun from becoming part of that statistic. Sometimes I am overwhelmed by the sheer need surrounding me. 
 
Then I am comforted as I remember the words of Mother Teresa, “Never worry about numbers. Help one person at a time and always start with the person nearest you. “ 
 
Please consider supporting the work that we are doing here in the Philippines. We are making a difference with maternal health and newborn survival one good birth at a time.
 
Thank you for your support of Mercy In Action on GlobalGiving.  
 
 
***(Names have been changed to protect the women's privacy)
Prenatal day at the clinic.
Prenatal day at the clinic.
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_MG_8620

We got a text message a few days ago at 5:30 am from Marcel in the nearby resettlement camp for Aeta tribal people who were displaced 20 years ago following a volcano that destroyed their homeland. They are known by the world community as Internally Displaced Persons, and Marcel is the tribal Chief’s wife. The family has 6 children, this is number 7. Since these refugees are truly among the poorest of the poor, she has not even the few pesos for public transportation, so our midwife Theresa picks her up and drives her to the birth center, where everything is free, including supplies and a newborn layette. We would have delivered her at home but like many countries in the developing world, our country passed ordinances to ban home birth a few years ago, in an attempt to lower the high neonatal and maternal death rate. Fortunately, the local Department of Health recognizes our birthing home as a facility, so they allow us to midwife babies in homebirth style in our own converted home. The baby is a healthy little girl. The Chief tells us he knows many babies and mothers who have died in childbirth; he is wildly happy with the birth. (Names have been changed to protect the women's privacy)

Because of your help, we have been able to offer hundreds of free prenatal check ups to pregnant women in the Subic Bay area of the Philippines. Our birth center delivers around 20 babies each month, and gives each woman individualized woman-centered care.

Thank you for your support of Mercy In Action on GlobalGiving.  


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Mother and Baby postpartum
Mother and Baby postpartum

A woman arrives at our door in labor. She lives on the local garbage dump, making a meager living as a scavenger along with her husband and older children. She is overjoyed to know that she will not be turned away for lack of the Skilled Birth Attendant user fee or Birth Center facility fee...for she has arrived at Mercy In Action's Mercy Midwives Birthing Home in Olongapo, where care is provided at no charge to the patients. She will be warmly welcomed into the clean, cheerful birthing suite, where she will labor, deliver, and recover in the same bed. Best of all, she does not need to worry that her baby will be taken away from her, or that she will be treated roughly, because this birth center not only has a well stocked pharmacy and supply closet, but they are a Mother-Friendly and Baby-Friendly designated facility as well. 

Approximately 15-20 women birth in our birth center each month, and each receives access to anti-hemoragic drugs if needed. Hemorrhage is the leading cause of death in the world. An average of 120 women come each month for prenatal exams, and each receives a monthly supply of prenatal vitamins. Each woman attending prenatal care also is given access to free screening for HIV and Hep B, and any mother positive is given the necessary treatment so that she never has to worry about passing these viruses on to her baby. Each woman who delivers in our centers also receives at least 2 home visits in the first week after birth, and 3 more postpartum visits before 6 weeks.

Thank you for your support of Mercy In Action on GlobalGiving!

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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

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