Join me as I travel to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to meet some of the world’s bravest women as they support each other by reducing infant and maternal mortality and the occurrence of the physically and emotionally devastating condition of fistula.
It is a great honor to be asked to visit the Hamlin College of Midwives to capture the essence of their 2011 graduation ceremony. On October 15, 2011, the Hamlin Fistula College of Midwives will graduate a second class of trained midwives. After the ceremony, these newly trained women will return to their rural villages to care for new mothers and assist extremely difficult deliveries.
Every day, 1,000 women and 8,000 babies die due to complications from pregnancy or childbirth. And for each maternal death, at least 20 additional women suffer devastating injuries related to their simple desire to produce a family to help work the fields to sustain their food source. These World Health Organization statistics are sobering, especially when contrasted with the kind of care that is received elsewhere in the world.
The Hamlin College of Midwives is responding to this crisis by training local rural women much needed midwifery skills and supporting them as they set up services in their rural home villages.
Come along as we celebrate these midwives and the mothers of Ethiopia! I will be documenting this momentous occasion, as well as other aspects of the beautiful and innovative Ethiopian culture. I will also be writing guest blog entries on Phil Borges’ Stirring the Fire website.
We are hoping that a collective cheer from around the world will be heard as these Ethiopian women extend one of the most loving gestures to one another: helping a mother deliver the life that grew inside of her.
Each midwife has been able to be trained without having to pay fees, which they could never afford. Your help is critical in making this possible. Donations for the midwife college are being accepted now at the Hamlin Fistula USA website.
For Dr. Catherine Hamlin’s story, read about her book here.