| Jan 29, 2024
Empowering Midwives, Saving Lives: AfD's Mission to Transform Maternal Health in Afghanistan
Facing Adversity: The Current Challenges in Afghanistan's Maternal Health Landscape
In Afghanistan, a country grappling with one of the highest rates of maternal and infant mortality in Asia, the role of midwives transcends merely medical care. They play an overlooked, yet crucial role in the battle for women’s health. According to UN estimates, a woman dies every other hour during pregnancy or childbirth.
Despite the dire situation, there is a glimmer of hope. UNICEF reports a significant achievement - a two-thirds reduction in maternal mortality over the last 12 years in Afghanistan’s remote northeast, where midwives deliver against all odds. Yet, according to BBC figures, about 638 women per 100,000 die during live births. The scarcity of medical supplies and funding, exacerbated by difficulties cited by Western donors, including the US and WHO, to provide adequate support, paints a bleak picture. With more than half of Afghanistan’s population living below the poverty line, as estimated by the World Bank, the situation is indeed grave.
Action for Development's Role: Lighting the Path for Maternal Health in Afghanistan
In this context, Action for Development (AfD)’s work guards hope in the communities it touches. AfD’s Midwifery Training Program, operational since 2014, has been a game-changer. It has successfully trained over 950 midwives, with participants consistently rating the program as 'excellent.' This program not only offers direct training to midwives but also ensures that these skills are cascaded to other health workers, magnifying the impact.
The path, however, is not without challenges. AfD's ability to continue this life-saving program hinges on securing enough funds. In 2023, despite receiving encouraging support from donors and backers, AfD faced a significant hurdle in realizing our objective to train 230 midwives, as we did not obtain adequate funding to initiate the training program.
As we move into 2024, AfD has set new goals of training 150 midwives across three provinces in Afghanistan by January 2025.
Your Support Can Make a Difference
We urge the global community to extend their support as we confront these daunting challenges and strive towards our new goals. AfD has already raised 38k and remains to raise another 38k by mid February, else the initial donation’s period will cease as well. Your donations are crucial in bridging the funding gap and ensuring the continuation of our mission to train midwives in Afghanistan. Every contribution, big or small, is a step towards saving lives and empowering women and families in this region. The struggles and triumphs of women of Afghanistan and midwives are more than mere statistics; they embody resilience, hope, and a call for urgent action.
By supporting AfD's Midwifery program, you are investing in a future where childbirth is no longer a fear for women. Join us in this essential endeavor; support AfD today to empower these courageous midwives and guarantee every mother and child in Afghanistan a fair chance at life.