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Dying Without Having Lived
Category: Service Projects | By Lori, 21-Jun-2011 | Viewed 6716  Comments 0 | Source Special publication of Rotary Magazin, Germany, 4/2010
Young girl carrying infant. Nigeria. Photo: World Bank
German journalist Thomas Kruchem traveled to Nigeria — following the fate of women, who as young mothers experience horrific trauma or die, because there is no maternal health care for them. With a large-scale health care project for young mothers Rotarians help to improve the shocking situation in Nigeria. The project turns out to be an overwhelming success.

From 2005 to March 2010, the "Rotarian Action Group for Population Growth and Sustainable Development (RFPD)" implemented its health care project for mothers in Northern Nigeria. Fortunately, now the governments of Kaduna and Kano are going ahead with the project. The government of Kano has already created an institute for quality control and entrusted a midwife with the project supervision. In cooperation with the administration, Rotary will continue to monitor the project. At the moment RFPD is negotiating with the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) about the ministry's contribution to a scaling up of the successful activities. With a new project two different goals should be aimed at: Firstly, maternal mortality in the ten hospitals assisted by Rotary and in the commuting areas should be further reduced. Already the Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) here has been reduced by more than 50% in the past two years— in some hospitals from up to 6,000 deaths per 100,000 deliveries to an average of 790 deaths per 100,000 births. In total, MMR in Nigeria (according to WHO/UNICEF) is around 1,100 per 100,000. To reach the new goals hospital equipment, training of staff and administrative as well as technical procedures have to be further improved; education of the public has to be intensified. Secondly, the scaling up of project activities should clearly demonstrate that the project's striking success can be replicated in other regions of Nigeria — initially in some rural areas of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) around Abuja.

For more information see: http://www.maternal-health.eu/ or http://www.rifpd.org

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