THE STATE OF MATERNAL HEALTH IN HAITI
Giving birth in Haiti is extremely dangerous. Unlike the United States, pregnancy and childbirth in Haiti often bring pregnant mothers feelings of fear and hopelessness. Women deliver their babies on dirt floors and cut newborns’ umbilical cords with rocks. What’s even more shocking is that the average woman in Thomazeau has 6-7 children and often experiences the same number of miscarriages in her lifetime.
As the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, women in Haiti do not have access to comprehensive prenatal and postnatal care, adequate nutrition, or family planning and maternal health education – resulting in an alarming maternal and infant mortality rate.
Nearly all of these maternal and infant deaths can be prevented. The women in Thomazeau, Haiti are desperate for an intervention and hope to save their own lives and their children's.
Every life matters. The pregnant women in Thomazeau region are some of the most oppressed people in the world. Together, we believe that we can bring life to this community and transform it for the Kingdom of God.
In 2012, LiveBeyond established a Maternal Health program in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Texas A&M University. The program is currently being run by David Vanderpool, MD, founder fo the program. Thousands of women have gone through our program, and we have seen the positive, life-saving impact in the lives of women and babies.
Since the program was established, the perinatal mortality rate has substantially decreased by 66% throughout the region.
Our program provides mothers with:
+ Initial screenings and weekly pregnancy monitoring
+ Weekly provisions of prenatal vitamins
+ Two hot meals each week + supply of weekly nourishment provisions
+ Maternal health education
+ Obstetrical delivery kit
+ In-home check-up after delivery
+ Newborn medical care for one year
Studies show that 42% of births in developing countries occur without medical assistance. In Thomazeau 98% of mothers deliver their babies alone at home. An OB/GYN hospital will provide women in this region with a safe place to deliver their babies surrounded by a medical staff with
Partner with us to save + touch more lives!
Hunger is one of the leading causes of maternal and infant mortality. Through the maternal health center, pregnant and nursing mothers will receive medical services and nutritional support through one year post-partum. The nutrition center will house an updated Kè Pou Timoun program that will provide health care and nutritional support for children until they reach school age.
THE IMPACT OF MATERNAL HEALTH
Most people in Thomazeau practice Haitian Vodou. It plays a significant role in shaping their beliefs about sickness and health, resulting in disastrous consequences for followers.
A mother in a village delivered extremely premature twins, both weighing 2 pounds. The twins were barely hanging onto life and weren’t strong enough to breastfeed. The mom wasn’t enrolled in our Maternal Health program, so she didn’t have an education on dealing with sick, premature babies.
The grandmother fed one twin a Vodou healing potion to “speed up” her recovery. It killed her immediately.
By the grace of God, one of the twins, Luvca, is a growing, healthy girl. Our Maternal Health staff has helped improve her health and educated Gina on daily steps she can take to raise Luvca and other strong children for His glory in the future.
By the grace of God, Gina accepted Christ and was baptized in 2017. She and Luvca are regular attendees at the LiveBeyond church.