Eradicating obstetric fistula, together!

Posted by sharon on Tuesday 20th September 2016

Our latest blog outlined some of the incredible work of our partners, Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia and WAHA – who both provide free obstetric fistula surgeries for people like Alga.

But that is not all they do…

For many women, their fistula prevents them from participating in daily life. This means that there is little opportunity for them to earn an income, leaving them without hope or financial support. After they are treated at WAHA’s hospital, women are offered the opportunity to take part in a 3-month skills-based training program at their Ploughshare Women's Crafts Training Centre. Tsehai, 23, is one of those women:

“The day I was asked if I wanted to be part of this training, I regained a sense of hope. After the training, I will start my own business. I now know that I can turn my life around. I can’t wait to pay my parents back for everything they did for me, when the whole world had turned its back on me. And it’s not just me, you know...all the other women here are excited about this training opportunity... even at night, we stay up late to discuss our future plans...”

And… they are also training the next generation of Ethiopia’s medical professionals.

Ensuring that mothers have access to a skilled attendant during labour can dramatically reduce the risk of death for the mother and newborn child and the incidence of obstetric fistula. Adem recently qualified from the Hamlin College of Midwives and has been posted to a health centre in Jarso, a remote community in Ethiopia.

Before her arrival, the community's awareness of maternal health was minimal. The health centre only saw three to seven live births a month – with the remainder being performed in unsafe environments, without

In just one month, Sister Adem attended an incredible 93 births! This highlights the incredible difference that having access to just one midwife can make. These midwives save lives. Since 2010, there has not been one maternal death where Hamlin midwives have been in attendance! 

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