Looking back over the last year there are so many emotions. In 2013 we provided a safe delivery for 272 mothers and their babies. I feel such gratitude when I think about that number as it would not be possible to do this work without the support we receive from individuals.
And each of those 272 mothers represents a much larger number as she is part of a family and a vital contributor to the community.
Today Mary Grace came into our clinic to give birth to her 5th child. She had delivered her four other children unattended in her home. She lives in a shack along the river. Two years ago she lost two of her daughters in a drowning accident as they tried to cross the swollen river during flood season. My heart aches for her loss. For the difficulty of the life that she was born into. Mary Grace and her husband make a living by planting crops and walking their produce in to town to sell in the local market each day. She has encountered so much loss and heartache in her lifetime.
Mary Grace gave birth to a healthy baby boy tonight and although she had a few minor complications we were able to immediately respond and provide her with the care she needed. Tomorrow she will be going home with a healthy baby. I am so thankful we are able to provide her with kind, compassionate, culturally competent care.
How can you put a value on what one life is worth? Is it worth our time, our attention? Is it worth our effort or even our money? When faced with so many needs, our limitations become all too apparent. Yet, the question remains, what is one life worth? Together, we respond -- that we do have the resources to meet the needs of so many mothers and infants -- together, with all of you who have chosen to give of yourselves selflessly -- that we cannot morally afford to ignore the desperate situation for so many families resigned to a life of neglect -- together, we will continue to provide a safe and loving place for those in need of a place of refuge.
Our hearts are overwhelmed with appreciation and love for all of you who join us in this journey towards safe motherhood. Thank you!
*The names have been changed to protect the privacy of the patients. The women shown in the pictures are not Mary Grace but are women who delivered at our clinic.