Frances Ganges – Huffington Post – 06 May 2014 (originally published 05 May)
It is 6 am in Tanzania. Ruka gets up as she does every morning, feeds her chickens and then walks the short distance to the health center. Ruka is the only midwife working at the small health center, which is a few hours’ drive from the nearest hospital. Outside, a few pregnant women are seated, patiently waiting to be seen. She attends to the laboring mothers, while continuing to see those who have walked miles for their antenatal checks, family planning counseling or post-natal visits.
Thousands of miles away in Indonesia, Wati has just finished lunch. In addition to being a midwife, she is also trained as a lawyer and spends much of her time advocating for policies that will ensure quality maternal-newborn health care.
And then there is Debrah, who received her midwifery training in New York. She now runs a birthing center in Trinidad with several other midwives. Debrah is also involved with an association of midwives from all over the Caribbean who are working tirelessly to help ensure good outcomes for mothers and their newborns . . .