Angela's report from Sierra Leone – day 3
We’ve been following Angela Mason, Women of Vision’s Senior Advisor, who is currently in Sierra Leone with ABC 7 News finding stories on World Vision sponsorship, maternal health and water. Read Angela’s reports from Day 1 and Day 2.
Today Angela and the news team visited a health clinic, which Angela says was “modest, but clean.” While they were there a woman named Hannah, 28 years old, came to the clinic for a check-up. She was pregnant with her second child and was having birth pains. Accompanying Hannah was Mrs. Sherriff, an elderly woman who is a traditional birth attendant. The government of Sierra Leone has recently banned traditional birth attendants from delivering babies in villages and is requiring pregnant women to give birth in clinics. However, with respect to the many women who are traditional birth attendants, they are allowed to accompany pregnant women to the clinics and act as companions and comforters during the birth process. Therefore, Mrs. Sherriff accompanied Hannah to this clinic.
Hannah was examined by two midwives, Elizabeth and Lucy, who wore bright pink uniforms and were “happy and kind.” They determined that Hannah was having phantom pains and Hannah and Mrs. Sherriff departed to walk home. Elizabeth and Lucy described to Angela and the team the challenges of giving birth to healthy babies in Sierra Leone. However, with the government’s new rule to give birth in clinics instead of in villages, Sierra Leone is seeing improvements in maternal and child health. Elizabeth and Lucy both love their jobs and said that they love seeing children around town with their mothers, knowing that they help make that possible.
In previous blog posts here and here, we’ve mentioned that World Vision is partnering with ABC News and the United Nations Foundation on the Million Moms Challenge. The goal of this campaign is to raise awareness on the dangers of pregnancy without the proper nutrition and healthcare, and to provide resources to change that reality for moms in developing nations.
Watch how Angela describes the importance of the Million Moms Challenge and what you can do: