We’re thrilled to report that in the last year, we’ve helped 31 girls and women with high-risk pregnancies give birth.
We facilitated clinic-based births for 31 women who had high-risk pregnancies and did not have the means to pay for a facility-based birth. 18 of these mothers gave birth to a baby girl, giving us a total of 49 girls and women directly affected.
Estimated girls & women affected
Each woman whose life was safeguarded by delivering in a clinic affects the lives of her mother, sisters, neighbors and friends. We multiplied 31 women each with 5 important women in her life to get to 155 girls and women indirectly affected.
Estimated community members affected
It’s been one year since you raised the funds to allow women with high-risk pregnancies to give birth in clinics or hospitals. We’re thrilled to report that in the last year, we’ve helped 31 girls and women with high-risk pregnancies give birth in a clinic or hospital rather than alone at home. Seven of those women were teenagers. Four of the women had to have caesarians because of their severe risk-factors. Three of the women were having their eighth babies. Two women had to have inductions because their bags of water had already ruptured but labor had not commenced for over 24 hours. All of the women whose clinic or hospital stays, that we supported, needed to have facility-based birth in order to ensure survival for both mother and baby. Thanks to your support, these 31 girls and women had safe deliveries assisted by trained health professionals. All 31 women and girls, as well as their babies, are alive because of your help.
Ivy, 34 years old, gave birth to her eighth baby by Caesarian section. Our staff had urged her to consider a ligation at the same time, but her husband, wouldn’t allow this. Under Philippine Law, Ivy’s husband had to agree. Ivy’s doctors were concerned for her life, and fortunately noticed Ivy’s mother was present, and asked her to sign the form. As a result Ivy was ligated, her baby is healthy, and she is recovering. We’re so thankful that she had her baby safely in a hospital!
Risks and challenges
Sometimes people are scared of clinics and doctors. We’ve had clients who needed to give birth in a facility, but who initially refused to go because they were so frightened. Fortunately, the midwives and staff at our clinics are warm and caring, so they quickly put nervous patients at ease. Another challenge with this project has been assessing which pregnancies necessitate facility-based births. Because our clients are generally quite poor, undernourished, and either very young, or have had multiple children, most of their pregnancies are high-risk. It’s been hard to tell some women that we can’t pay for their births even when some of their risk-factors are similar to women whose deliveries we did pay for.
What we’ve learned
We’ve learned that there are far more high-risk pregnancies in our communities than we had initially thought. There are so many more women and girls who needed to give birth in clinics than we could pay for with this grant. Doing it again, we would try to raise a larger amount of money so that we wouldn’t have to deny girls and women the opportunity to have safer deliveries.
To help save more mamas and babies, we have put up a new project on Catapult to continue this support for the pregnant girls and women in our community. Please consider helping us again, to ensure that girls and women don’t lose their lives while giving life.
Amount spent so far
All inclusive clinic fees
For more information, please see rootsofhealth.org
Counting on clinics
Since you raised the funds to allow women with high-risk pregnancies to give birth in clinics or hospitals, we have supported nine women whose health necessitated giving birth in a facility rather than at home. Three of the women were under 20 years old and were pregnant with their first child. Another was having her fifth baby. Two women had to have inductions because their bags of water had already ruptured but labor had not commenced for over 24 hours. All of the women whose clinic or hospital stays we paid for needed to have facility-based births in order to ensure survival for both mother and baby. Because of your support, these nine women had safe deliveries assisted by trained health professionals. All nine women and babies are now at home and doing well.
Risks and challenges
When dealing with labor, it can be hard to estimate how much time we have to transport our clients from their homes to clinics. Occasionally we’ve moved a laboring woman too early and she spent more time than needed away from home. Once, a client waited too long and ended up giving birth in a tricycle on her way to the hospital! Another challenge is deciding which pregnancies are high risk and necessitate a clinic-birth. When they find out they can have a free facility-based delivery most women would choose to do so. However, we don’t have funds to pay for everyone to give birth in clinics, so we have to prioritize the ladies who have the most risk-factors or complications with their pregnancies.
One of the girls whose birth we recently paid for, Nicole, is 17 years old. She dropped out of high school when she learned that she was pregnant. She had been a late addition to our teen programming, but unfortunately was already pregnant by the time she learned about how the reproductive systems function. Her boyfriend and her mom are going to help her care for the baby. We hope that we’ll be able, eventually, to encourage her to go back to school.
Our Clinical Team is continuing to provide prenatal care to over 50 women in our 6 community sites. They’ll continue to help ladies plan where they’ll give birth, and where they’ll source payment if they opt for facilitiy-based birth. We will continue to monitor the health of women and girls who cannot afford to pay for their deliveries but whose risk-factors necessitate giving birth in a facility. Thanks to your help, we will be able to pay for around 20 more facility-based births.
|Line Items||Original budget||Amount spent so far|
All inclusive clinic fees
Roots of Health helps high-risk pregnant women in Palawan have clinic-based deliveries.
Why we care: Pregnancies can be high-risk for a variety of reasons and access to emergency obstetric care can mean the difference between life and death.
How we're solving this: Ensuring the costs of obstetric care are covered.
Melody is 17 years old and is going to have her first baby next month. She was a high school student, but was forced to drop out of school when she became pregnant. She now relies on support from her own parents, who scavenge through trash. Because Melody is young and this is her first baby, her pregnancy is considered high-risk and she should not give birth at home. However, her family struggles to earn even $1 per day, and they have no means of raising the $100 they need so Melody can have a safe delivery in a clinic or hospital.
Roots of Health serves countless other women and girls with stories just like Melody. Pregnancies can be high-risk for a variety of reasons: because the mother-to-be is younger than 20 or older than 35, if this is a woman’s first baby or her 6th or 7th, if the expectant mother has diabetes, high blood pressure or preeclampsia, or if there are complications such as if the baby is in breech position or if the baby’s umbilical cord is coiled around its neck.
In order to help ensure the heath and safety of the mother and the baby, Roots of Health staff are committed to assisting with the home deliveries that most of our clients have due to a lack of money to deliver in a clinical setting. However, we frequently identify situations in which the mother-to-be really must deliver in a clinic in order to avoid harm to or even death of the mother or baby. For these pregnancies we ask for your support. On average we assist with 30 high-risk deliveries a year, so every $100 raised translates to another Melody who can safely deliver in a clean environment equipped to handle any complications or emergencies that may arise.