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A Global Crisis with Local Solutions

The issue of maternal and newborn health is, at its roots, an issue of inequality—unequal access to not only medical resources, but also social, economic and political resources.

Thus, regions of the world that face economic instability and the continuing effects of colonialism and war are at greater risk when it comes to maternal and newborn mortality ill health.

Addressing maternal and newborn mortality requires a thoughtful examination of the complex structural causes and local realities which form the context of the crisis, such as the history of colonization, international debt, and forced structural adjustment.

We believe that global maternal and newborn health affects all of humankind. Long-term local solutions will be the result from collaboration and dialogue.

Solidarity, Not Charity

"If you have come here to help me, then you are wasting your time…But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together."

This beautiful and insightful quote from Aboriginal artist and activist Lilla Watson identifies solidarity, not charity, as the key to meaningful social change. The charity model, which seeks to address issues by throwing money at the problem while ignoring the deep underlying causes, is beyond ineffectual. The practice of solidarity, one the other hand, empowers and supports those already working to create change.

There are many ways to support existing efforts or start your own. Think about what you do and how you are uniquely positioned to improve the health of mothers and their children.

Get Inspired

Take the subjects of the film as inspiration, each one works with the tools at their disposal to make an impact. We are continually inspired by the work of Madam Bwa, Goitom Berhane and Pum Mach, and we hope you are too. So how can you help?

What is your contribution? If you're a blogger, you might blog about it. If you're a teacher, you might teach about it. If you are a student, you might start organizing your community!

Our experiences in making this film have led us to support community-led efforts to address both the direct and indirect causes of maternal and newborn ill health: poverty, community health, sanitation, women's empowerment, health worker training, lifesaving drugs, education...

To learn more about and to donate to projects that support women and girls in Ethiopia.


Marie Stopes International works locally to provide safe abortion and family planning education.

To learn more about and to donate to projects that support women and girls in Cambodia.


TRAUMACARE works to create and strengthen a referral system from the village level to the provincial hospital in Battambang by constantly educating villagers and training health workers.

If The Trauma Car Foundation site is not working and you would like to learn more about or support the Delivery Life Support in Cambodia, please contact: Yeng Vanheng at: yangvanheng@gmail.com

To learn more about and to donate to projects that support women and girls in Haiti.

OURSOIL provides essential sanitation services to over 14,000 people living in the camps of people displaced by the 2010 earthquake in Port-au-Prince, Haiti and over 10,000 people living in communities throughout northern Haiti and in Cap-Haitien. SOIL promotes integrated approaches to the problems of poverty, poor public health, agricultural productivity, and environmental destruction. Empowering communities, building the soil, nourishing the grassroots.

KONBIT SANTE work in collaboration with the Haitian Ministry of Health and other partners to build local capacity in all aspects of the health system - from door-to-door community outreach programs, to strengthening community health centers, to improving care at the regional referral hospital.