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Keeping Mom healthy here at home and around the world.

Protecting the most vulnerable

Natural disasters, poverty, conflict and social unrest threaten the most vulnerable in a community with mothers and children often the first to face the consequences. That gives a special urgency to restoring and supporting the services that keep mother and child healthy even in extreme circumstances:

  1. Make sure that the local maternal and child health center has a power source after a storm to help ensure safe deliveries. 
  2. Deliver emergency medicine and medical supplies to replace those lost in a disaster. 
  3. Train health workers at a local health center to strengthen key skills or add new ones that identify potential risks and provide quality care for mothers and newborns. 
  4. Set up a temporary facility until a damaged center can be repaired, or extra medical staff to help during the crisis.
  5. Provide something as basic as clean water, which a local health center in an extremely poor region may lack. 
  6. Support community health workers and leaders with resources as the first line of health in a crisis.

Power, supplies, staff support, water, local community involvement are all important to a mother’s health.  Continue on to read more about three places where #Health4Mom has taken a big step forward.  

mother and child

How far will Mom go to protect her children, including the ones not yet born?  

In Colombia, during the current Venezuelan humanitarian crisis, expectant mothers (more than 10,000 so far) are travelling miles and crossing borders to seek basic health care at our clinics. With the collapse of much of the health system in Venezuela, pregnant women are finding access in the Americares clinics to proper nutritional support, screening for possible complications and referrals for specific health issues, providing a path to a healthy delivery. “More arrive each day. We are committed to providing services—the only health care many Venezuelans in Colombia have access to.”…. Walter James, Americares country director.

Venezuelan mother and children visiting an Americares clinic in Colombia.
Venezuelan mother and children visiting an Americares clinic in Colombia.

What can Mom do when the earth shakes and the ocean rises to destroy homes?

In Indonesia, following the recent earthquake and tsunami, Moms sought help in the local health center. With many of these local facilities damaged or destroyed, we have been working with the Ministry of Health to support and equip reproductive health centers to meet the immediate needs of mothers in the area. When a disaster of this magnitude strikes, many basic services are lost at a vulnerable time for mothers. Restoring those services is crucial.  To date, 15 Reproductive Health Tents and 10 Women Friendly Spaces have been installed and outfitted with Americares equipment and supplies. Americares has also provided Mental Health and Psychosocial Support training for 104 midwives in conjunction with the establishment of the clinics. Trauma from the disaster threatens moms, children and their health care providers. 

Woman visiting a temporary reproductive health center in Indonesia.
Woman visiting a temporary reproductive health center in Indonesia.

When Ebola struck after years of deadly civil war, Moms were left with a health system that could no longer serve their most basic needs.  So the mothers and their communities set out to build it back. 

In Liberia, after the 2014 Ebola Outbreak, we remained in the country, establishing and supporting 3 local health facilities that serve maternal and child health.  The focus is on the community, engaging and training community health workers and traditional midwives to work with the health center staff to provide safe deliveries and quality health care for mothers and children. Last year, those 3 health centers delivered more than 1,500 healthy babies while protecting the lives of the new mothers.  

As always, Mom knows what it takes to keep her family healthy.  We are committed to providing Mom with the health she needs.  And Mom will do the rest.  

Mother and child in Liberia served by a maternal and child health center.
Mother and child in Liberia served by a maternal and child health center.