Prenatal and Maternity Care - 013717 Women’s Programs

Midwives are like ‘travelling health clinics’ for moms in Vietnam

September, 2012—In the middle of a stormy spring night in Lai Chau Province,
Vietnam, Asia,  17-year-old Lo Thi Yen began experiencing
intense pains in her lower abdomen—the first sign that her baby
was on his way into the world.

With an arduous midnight trek to the health clinic out of the
question, Yen’s husband immediately called a local midwife to
assist with the delivery at their home.

Equipped with invaluable education and tools obtained at a
10-week Samaritan’s Purse  training course, traditional birth
attendant Lo Thi Lien helped Yen successfully deliver a healthy 3.4
kg boy.

“Mrs. Lien helped me deliver my son safely and both of us are in
good health now,” said Yen.

Our partnership with Canadian donors like you and the Lai Chau
Department of Health in Vietnam,  is providing training
for more than 800 midwives such as Lo Thi Lien throughout the
remote and mountainous province. Our goal is that a trained midwife
will be within reach of every woman by the end of this year.

Following the initial 10-week training session, quarterly group
meetings help keep the trainees’ knowledge fresh.

Expectant mothers like Yen rely on midwives to provide prenatal
and postnatal advice, assistance with delivery, and referrals to
the health clinic. This is crucial care in a place where 59 per
cent of women give birth at home, and the maternal mortality rate
is 15 to 20 times higher than in Canada.

“I thank God so much for the poor, ethnic minority highlanders
with great hearts like Mrs. Lien… who have been helping their
neighbors without expecting any payment,” said our Vietnam, Asia
project manager.

Much like the story of the poor but generous widow in
Mark  12, “out of her poverty” Yen offered Lien the only
payment she could afford: “All I could give her was one kilo of
homegrown rice,” said Yen.

Prenatal and Maternity Care - 013717 Women’s Programs

Your gift can help women in poor, rural communities give birth to healthy babies and raise them wisely. Samaritan’s Purse not only trains local birth attendants in areas where mothers often have no access to medical care during pregnancy and delivery, but also provides parenting training, transportation to hospitals, vitamins, and more.