Dartmouth Rotary Club Takes Action to Save Mothers and Children in Niger
When pharmacist and HPIC board member Robert Earle first heard about HPIC’s plans for a Mother-Child Health kit, he thought immediately of Niger. “The need is so great in the area,” he said when speaking to HPIC about bringing Mother-Child Health Kits to the community he knows well. “In a country as poor as Niger the rural areas are neglected, and at the moment there is almost no maternal care.” There is no question Niger is in desperate need of support for maternal care. The country not only has one of the highest maternal death rates in the world, it has the highest fertility rate in the world.
The result is a sobering statistic:
The average number of children a woman in Niger gives birth to is 7.52 and her lifetime chance of dying of complications from pregnancy or childbirth is one in seven.
HPIC developed a Mother-Child Health Kit designed to equip rural healthcare workers with basic medicines and supplies. The kit will cover the essentials for providing care for pregnant women and their developing babies, delivering a baby safely and immediate follow-up care of mothers and newborn babies. The kit will mean higher quality of care and ultimately better survival rates for newborns and mothers. Robert has already been instrumental in mobilizing the Dartmouth Rotary Club to support the delivery of HPIC Physician Travel Packs to Niger in the past and felt strongly that the Mother-Child Health Kit would be extremely beneficial to the women in the region. “Supplying just the basics means so much.”
The Dartmouth Rotary Club raised the funds to ensure the delivery of the first six kits going into Niger but more is needed to ensure that mothers in the region are not facing such dire risks when giving birth. The kits contain consumable medicines, non-consumable equipment and maternal training will be provided for frontline healthcare workers in the region. HPIC has teamed up with other partners that are also committed to saving mothers in the developing world. Our partners, such as the Salvation Army, GAiN (Global Aid Network) Canada, SEMAFO and EMCC (Evangelical Missionary Church of Canada) are working to bring these lifesaving kits to other countries in need such as Haiti and Benin.
Help us ensure that healthcare workers in the developing world have the skills, supplies and medicines to save the lives of mothers and children.