Sayle and her babySayle Kakee recently welcomed her second baby into the world with as much joy as any mother, but she has more reasons than most to celebrate.

These are just a few of the battles she has overcome with the support of Health Poverty Action. You might find a few of them surprising…

Obstacles to health: living far away from health centres.

Sayle lives in a very remote community in Ethiopia. The healthcare system doesn’t have the capacity to cover these hard-to-reach areas, so people face long and difficult journeys to reach facilities.  Health Poverty Action is training health workers and volunteers to work in these remote communities, providing basic services and raising awareness of the health facilities people can access.

Obstacle to health: poverty and the cost of travel to health facilities.

Sayle’s nomadic community move around a large region to find grazing pasture for their livestock which is also their means of currency – they don’t have access to the cash they would need to pay for transport to health facilities.  Health Poverty Action is supporting free ambulances which enable people to get to hospital without worrying about the cost.

Obstacle to health: giving birth at home.

The distance from and cost of getting to health facilities is one of the reasons that around 95% of women give birth at home with no medical support. This can be very dangerous if there are complications. “We face many problems giving birth at home,” says Sayle. “A lot of women die due to bleeding.” Health Poverty Action has been strengthening health services so that women can get the life-saving care they need. Thanks to this work, Sayle stayed in a specially-built birthing home for two weeks before she was due to give birth, to ensure she could deliver her baby safely.

Obstacle to health: lack of knowledge on newborn care.

Sayle had her first baby at home before she knew about the healthcare available. Without this, her baby suffered with a weak chest. Health Poverty Action is providing new mothers with “new baby kits” including blankets to ensure babies stay warm at night, and other simple but effective tools to ensure they get the healthiest possible start in life. Sayle was delighted with hers!

“From now on, I will tell all other women to give birth at the health facility.”

Children in Ethiopia

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