At Direct Relief, May is for moms. Throughout the month, we will regularly honor mothers around the world who inspire us. Today’s story comes from our staffer in Haiti, Catherine Hermantin, who recently met with moms in the city of Marchand Dessalines.
Haiti has the highest rates of infant, under-five and maternal mortality in the Western Hemisphere. But through collaboration with Management Sciences for Health’s Santé pour le Développement et la Stabilité d’Haïti (SDSH) Project, Direct Relief is working to build hope for expecting mothers and their children.
The Claire Heureuse Hospital in Marchand Dessalines is one of eight sites in Haiti that Direct Relief supports to improve maternal health care in the country. Located about 75 miles north of Port au Prince, it is one of the only hospitals in the area that is able to safely deliver babies – the next closest is an hour’s drive from the city.
Direct Relief supports the maternity ward with equipment to upgrade emergency obstetric care centers, medications and incentive kits to encourage mothers to come to the health center for prenatal checkups, delivery, and postnatal checks. The incentive kits include sanitary pads, diapers, towels, washcloths, soap, blankets, infant clothing, personal care products and other much-needed items. The items are placed in a bucket so the mothers can use them to carry and store water.
Please click on each of the photos below and read about some of the amazing women who have safely delivered babies at the hospital and are dedicated to providing the best care for their children that they can. Some of the mothers who receive care at the hospital relocated to Marchand Dessalines from Port au Prince following the devastating 2010 earthquake, working hard to support their families despite significant losses.