Friday, June 26, 2009

Dealing with the Aftermath of Maternal Mortality

One of the biggest issues facing women globally is maternal mortality. The New York Times has had a three part series on death in Tanzania, and has focused on maternal morality. Their first piece was about death in childbirth, and the second was about the high rates of unsafe abortions in the country. Their final piece is about the thousands of children who are orphaned and how one orphanage is trying to help these children.

According to the article, very little is known about orphan care and how poor nations are dealing with the large numbers of children whose mothers die in childbirth or due to botched abortions. Fathers cannot provide the nourishment an infant needs, and so the baby is often sent off to orphanages.

In the majority of orphanages, children can wait for years for someone to come and adopt them, which does not provide them with the emotional stability and care that is provided by a family. Research has shown that children who do not recieve enough physical touching or care form attachment problems.

In the orphanage in Berega, they want to do more than just provide their children with physical nourishment, so the children are cared for by teenage girls until they are old enough to be sent to their families. While this orphanage offers a solution for helping the millions of children who are motherless and stuggling to survive, there needs to be more work done to prevent maternal mortality.

The issue of maternal mortality is not only devastating to the women and families in the developing world, but it also undermines other international development efforts.

1 comment:

Lauren said...

Nice post, Ellen