Together: Our 2023 Winter Newsletter.
We are delighted to share our 2023 Winter Newsletter with you. Together we have leveraged great change and it is thanks to you, our wonderful supporters, that this is all possible.
As you will read, a seemingly simple intervention, like providing a girl with a reusable period pack and enabling her to return to school, or equipping a women’s health worker with the educational resources to combat child marriage, can transform lives.
Newsletter highlights: find out more from our partners’ projects
Strengthening maternal health
The Big Give
We are delighted to share that our match fund appeal through The Big Give raised £22,632 for the life-saving Maternity Waiting Homes Project.
Many women in rural Ethiopia have no choice but to give birth at home, without medical help. Providing maternity waiting homes within health centres means women have a safe place to stay at the end of their pregnancy, reducing dangerous home births, childbirth injuries and needless deaths.
Our Big Give appeal has meant that not only has there been an increase in women giving birth in health facilities but also an increase in women using the antenatal services, reducing the risk of complications and emergencies.
Tamenech experienced bleeding during pregnancy, however, she was able to stay at the maternity waiting home where she was closely monitored while awaiting the arrival of her twins. “The staff here counselled me and helped me understand what to expect. If it was not for this place and with the bleeding I had, if I was to go back home, I could lose my babies and maybe even die.”
Opportunities for women and girls
Doing whatever it takes to protect girls
Hasna almost resorted to poisoning herself to avoid being forced into marriage. After both her parents died, her brother believed it was his responsibility to see that she married, though it was against her will. She felt powerless and alone.
Your support helps fund Women Extension Workers, who are trusted role models for girls like Hasna who have no one to turn to.
Faatuma is one of these women. She heard of Hasna’s desperation through her community outreach work, speaking to girls and listening to their daily challenges and difficulties. Part of her role also involves working alongside religious leaders who, as respected authorities, can lead by example to bring an end to harmful practices such as child marriage. By coming together, they helped Hasna’s brother understand her rights and supported her to continue in school.
Emergency and recovery work
Maternal Health: rebuilding after conflict
Work rebuilding health services in the aftermath of the conflict has begun in the Tigray region. Our partner is working on restoring maternal and child health services, distributing vital equipment, providing clinical mentorship and re-equipping clinics and maternity waiting homes. As they work to restore the health system, they are also working to increase health service uptake, making sure people know where they can go to receive medical aid.
Improving access to education
Access to opportunities
This year, you have helped 163 young people learn practical skills through Hope Enterprises’ vocational training programme. These students would otherwise have had to stop learning too soon, to find whatever work they could to try and support their families. Hope adapts their curriculums each year based on job availability, equipping students with the skills that will give them access to wider employment opportunities.
Supporting health and wellbeing
Ahmed's story - nothing can hold him back
Ahmed is four. For the first months of his life, his parents had no idea that Ahmed had cerebral palsy. As he grew older and still could not sit up, they just kept hoping his condition would somehow improve. “By the time we saw that children who were his age were able to walk, to go to school – we just woke up.”
The family live in rented accommodation in a town near Addis Ababa and work as daily labourers. Their lack of steady income means the transport costs are very expensive, but each week they make the long journey into the capital for Ahmed’s treatment.
When he first came to the paediatric rehabilitation centre, Ahmed had difficulty standing and walking. Now he can walk freely using a stick, and even independently for a few minutes at a time.
Ahmed used to watch the other children going to school, wishing he could go too. However now, to his great excitement, he is enrolled for the new school year.