Wednesday, September 13 is Bump Day — a day to raise awareness for maternal and child health globally. Around the world, 16,000 children die from preventable causes every day, but we have tools and interventions that can help. In the Kiboga District of Uganda, Dr. Martin Kabuye has seen not only the positive effects of more doctors and improved facilities, but also of less traditional approaches like a radio program to help educate medical professionals in rural communities and advocacy. For Bump Day, learn how maternal and child health have improved in Kiboga, then share this story with your friends to help give the Reach Every Mother and Child Act a ‘bump’ in Congress!
Counting the Blessings of Success
“World Vision has been a father, a mother, everything. We have had comprehensive services where a child benefits in all directions—in health, in community, everywhere,” says Martin Kabuye, who two years ago served as the one doctor for 350,000 people in Kiboga District, Uganda.
Today, there are four doctors who have come to work at the hospital and the services are better. Latrine coverage was at 43 percent, and now it is at 62 percent just two years later.
“This is happening where World Vision is,” says Martin.
Another success has come through Citizen Voice in Action — teaching people their rights and how to advocate for them.
“Our leaders didn’t know what was happening in our district,” says Martin. “They didn’t know what was under their nose. They didn’t know that health was underfunded.”
Scenes from the Kiboga District Hospital in Uganda
This is the outpatient waiting area at the Kiboga District Hospital in Uganda. Marin explains, “Where World Vision is not supporting [health], it is not moving.” World Vision’s presence is a huge help for this community.
Here a baby receives oxygen at Kiboga District Hospital. In Kiboga, the relationship with World Vision has improved indicators for health. The national rate of malnutrition is 14 percent, while in Kiboga, it is 12 percent. Now, Kiboga’s rates for wasting and stunting are also lower than the national average.
Dr. Martin Kabuye and a hospital administrator, Sister Diana display kits for new mothers. Training has had an impact, especially on the Village Health Teams. “I’ve trained a quarter of this country because of World Vision,” says Martin. “The radio program has helped us so much.”
The Impact Reaches Far and Wide
Village Health Team member, Sara Namafula, 30, was able to help Pauline Nanfuka, 25, during pregnancy and the birth of her daughter, Florence, now 6 months. Sara was prepared to deliver the baby because she listened to a weekly radio program Obbanywa, which World Vision provides content for.
“When I got pregnant with Florence, I went to Sara,” shares Pauline. “I got labor pains. I didn’t know my due date. I called Sara. She put on gloves and helped me.”
Sara says, “I hadn’t ever delivered a baby before. I learned through the trainings how to do it…I never thought I would deliver a baby. I feel so proud. They have given me the title of doctor. I feel so good.”
These programs are great examples of how we can help reduce preventable maternal and child deaths. Today, you can be a part of the solution too. The Reach Every Mother and Child Act is a piece of legislation that will use cost-effective, proven interventions to help save moms and kids. Show your support by contacting your members of Congress and asking them to cosponsor this bill today!
Photo: Toddler in maternity ward at Kiboga District Hospital, Uganda. © 2016 World Vision/ photo by Jon Warren