I’ve reached that age where my friends are actually having babies. It still surprises me each time one of my friends says that they’re pregnant, and I’m reminded that we’re technically full blown adults. It’s even more amazing to watch them go from being with child to actually having the cutest (seriously!) babies ever.
We’re really lucky that in Canada, being pregnant is something to be celebrated. Of course, there’s anxiety, fear and stress, something that all expectant mothers face. But women in Canada know that we will be able to safely deliver our babies, and have birth in a hospital (or supervised home birth) if we choose. Not every woman is so lucky.
As we approach Mother’s Day, I want to bring up a tough topic. Every day, more than 800 women around the world die from pregnancy or childbirth related complications. That number is way too high. That’s why ADRA Canada, a non-profit organization is launching a campaign for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCH).
“Pregnancy is a time for full hearts and joy, but because of poor maternal health in developing countries and remote communities, it often ends in heartbreak,” says James Astleford, Executive Director, ADRA Canada. “In Cambodia, Myanmar, Philippines and Rwanda, the most significant causes of maternal and child mortality are high rates of acute and chronic malnutrition of mothers and children. If babies don’t receive enough nutrition within the first 1,000 days of life, the brain does not develop properly and this is irreversible. These deaths and consequences of severe malnutrition are preventable. By increasing awareness of MNCH among Canadians, we are sending a message of hope and support – encouraging more Canadians to take action.”
The good news is that nearly all maternal and child deaths are preventable. Help bring awareness to this important cause by sharing a photo or video with your hands in a heart around your belly button and share you photo on social media using #Heart4MaternalHealth. Your photo will send a message of hope to mothers around the world.Here’s my photo! Will you share yours? You can also support ongoing MNCH projects at ADRA Canada.
Learn more at HeartForMaternalHealth.ca