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Posts Tagged ‘Ethiopia’

I attended a press conference yesterday (6/17) where Ashoka and the Maternal Health Task Force at EngenderHealth announced the 16 winners of the Young Champions for Maternal Health competition. The 16 Young Champions come from 13 different countries and will be placed with Ashoka Fellows around the world for a 9-month mentorship.

Excerpt from my post on the MHTF Blog:

“…Tim Thomas explained that improving global maternal health is a persistent challenge—and one that will need to be tackled via multiple sectors. Tim pointed out that the Young Champions have big and innovative ideas for improving maternal health—and that the Ashoka Fellows will play a crucial role in teaching the Champions about social entrepreneurship, building sustainable infrastructure, and how to ‘scale-up’ global health projects—so that their big ideas can result in real and lasting impact.

A big idea is precisely what Yeabsira Mehari has—and she looks forward to tapping into Glory Alexander’s wisdom to develop the idea. Yeabsira aspires to set up a fistula care center in Ethiopia that will address both the health needs of the women affected by fistula as well as the economic and socio-cultural effects of fistula. Her dream is to establish a fistula care center that will prepare women to be social entrepreneurs themselves–by providing them with midwifery training and/or small business development training as well as offering micro-loans to get their businesses off the ground.

Ashoka India Fellow Glory Alexander works to end stigma and discrimination associated with HIV/AIDS in India. Her organization, ASHA Foundation, focuses on prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV/AIDS and primary prevention for vulnerable women.   Aside from learning about social entrepreneurship, sustainability, and ‘scale-up’, Yeabsira is excited to work with Glory to develop expertise in engaging with and helping to empower stigmatized populations. She anticipates that many of the lessons she will learn from working with HIV/AIDS patients in India will be transferable to working with fistula patients in Ethiopia…”

Read my full post on the MHTF Blog.

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As part of the Pulitzer Center’s commitment to raising awareness for the under-reported issue of global maternal mortality, the center has launched a new interactive site , Dying for Life, dedicated to maternal health reporting projects.

The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting

“Dying for Life is a response to this crisis [maternal ill health and death], viewing motherhood as a continuum that encompasses reproductive health, family planning, pregnancy, childbirth and infant and maternal mortality. Our forward-looking reporting includes dispatches from Guinea Bissau, India, Mexico, Ethiopia and Nigeria. We hope you’ll join the global conversation by engaging with the journalists, and sharing your own stories about maternal health and its impact on your community.”

Click here to visit, Dying for Life, the new interactive site.

The Pulitzer Center has also partnered with Helium to launch a Global Maternal Health Writing Contest, launched on May 24th.

“We want to know your thoughts on questions raised by Pulitzer Center-sponsored reporting projects around the globe – and the winning essays will be showcased on the Pulitzer Center’s website and on Helium. Winning writers will also receive a Pulitzer Center Global Issues/Citizen Voices Award.”

The deadline for the Global Maternal Health Writing Contest is Thursday June 24 and winners will be announced on Wednesday July 7.

Click here for contest details.

Click here for information on recent Pulitzer Center reporting projects with a focus on maternal health.

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A new paper, Maternal mortality for 181 countries, 1980-2008: a systematic analysis of progress towards Millennium Development Goal 5, published today in the Lancet Online First, suggests that global maternal deaths have dropped from 526,300 in 1980 to 342,900 in 2008.

The Lancet

The authors of the paper, estimate that the global MMR decreased from 422 maternal deaths/100,000 live births in 1980 to 251 maternal deaths/100,000 live births in 2008. They also conclude that more than 50%  of all maternal deaths in 2008 occurred in six countries alone: India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Ethiopia, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“…Our analysis of all available data for maternal mortality from 1980 to 2008 for 181 countries has shown a substantial decline in maternal deaths. Progress overall would have been greater if the HIV epidemic had not contributed to substantial increases in maternal mortality in eastern and southern Africa. Global progress to reduce the MMR has been similar to progress to reduce maternal deaths, since the size of the global birth cohort has changed little during this period. Across countries, average yearly rates of decline from 1980 to 2008 in the MMR differed widely. This new evidence suggests there is a much greater reason for optimism than has been generally perceived, and that substantial decreases in the MMR are possible over a fairly short time…”

Read the full paper here.

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Lisa Russell and IPAS invite you to an evening of film and music for women’s health.

Click here to learn about MDGfive.com, a new project that Lisa and Maya are working on. They are calling on creative communities to use their artistic skills to raise awareness for the issue of maternal health.

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ETHIOPIA
The Atlanta Business Chronicle

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has awarded $8.1 million to Emory University’s School of Nursing for a project that aims to improve maternal and newborn survival rates throughout rural Ethiopia.

The Atlanta Business Chronicle refers to the project as an “infant study” in the headline–leaving out the maternal component of the project.

The Emory Wheel also covered this story and reported that Emory will work with the Ethiopian Ministry of Health, the Regional Health Bureaus, John Snow Research and Training, Inc, the University Research Corporation and two regional Ethiopian universities to carry out the two and a half year project.

“According to principal investigator Lynn Sibley, associate professor in the Nursing School and Rollins School of Public Health, newborn and maternal mortality rates are high in Ethiopia, so those collaborating on the project will work to improve the training for frontline health care workers to ensure better newborn and maternal services at the time of birth.”

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