Our maternity packs program is one of Maisha’s projects that aim to promote sexual and reproductive health rights for women, in this case, maternal health for women. There are disturbing stories of pregnant women in distant villages with no access to healthcare or facilities for delivery. These women either give birth in their homes unattended to, or are hurried off to the nearest town, which may be several miles away in search of maternity clinics or hospitals, and that is, provided they have the right means of transportation. Good roads are also scarce in some of these places. All of these can endanger the life of a mother and her unborn baby and in severe cases, result in death. The number of women who do not go to hospital during pregnancy and after child birth is still very alarming with about 145 women of childbearing age dying every single day as a result of pregnancy and child birth complications. This matter is also disturbingly and undeniably linked to child deaths. The same report states that the country equally loses about 2,300 under five year-olds every day, which is an alarming rate. A woman’s chance of dying from pregnancy and childbirth in Nigeria is reported at 1 in 13. The sad truth is that the number of women who even dye at homes and whose deaths aren’t even recorded far outweighs those deaths that are recorded especially in northern Nigeria and in rural communities. Research has shown that if women are given incentives, it’ll encourage them to visit health facilities during pregnancy. So, I work closely with primary health care centres in rural communities to give out maternity packs to rural women and also speak with them about some challenges they face to help in our advocacy work. The last event was in Byhazin Bwari area council Kubwa Abuja. A more detailed link will be out.
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