Register: Free Online Course Examines Women, Child, and Adolescent Health #FLImprovingHealth

The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine is launching a free online course about women, child, and adolescent health. The course called Improving the Health of Women, Children and Adolescents: from Evidence to Action will last for six weeks starting on Monday, September 28, 2015. Registrations are now open.  While the course is primarily targeted to health professionals anyone can join.

Watch the course trailer:

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Report – UN Peacekeepers Engage in Sex Exploitation in Haiti

While visiting Haiti you will see that the United Nations’ presence is palpable across the country especially in the capital Port-au-Prince where the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) is housed. During rush hour it is not uncommon to see countless UN vehicles with peacekeepers and leaders in berets (mostly men) among the many motos and cars driven by locals, buses, and NGO SUVs.

Haiti is also the Western hemisphere’s poorest country. That is not to be taken lightly. Poverty is rife and the need for everyday necessities is huge. It isn’t surprising, then, to read that UN peacekeepers are accused of engaging in transactional sex with hundreds of both rural and urban Haitian women in exchange for food, medicines, mobile phones, and money. It also isn’t uncommon for women to become pregnant during this transactional sex as reported by PRI in “Haitian moms demand UN help for the babies their peackeepers left behind.”

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Photojournalist Exposes Sex Trafficking in the United States

mbcchildsextrafficking
Written by Stacy Gammill, Communications Manager & Chief Writer, Mom Bloggers Club Network


It is every parent’s worst fear—their child lured away from their family by promises of fun, adventure and independence then unwittingly caught in the thick web of child sex trafficking and prostitution.

But most parents rest easy believing that kind of thing only happens in other countries, to other people’s children, who are from broken homes.

Filmmaker Tim Matsui’s new documentary, “The Long Night,” exposes child sex trafficking and underage prostitution very close to home—in Seattle, Washington. Mr. Matsui has been documenting child victimization and sexual exploitation for over 15 years as an award-winning documentary filmmaker, multimedia journalist and producer, but this time he brings his lens to focus on the problem here in American communities.

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Featured Video: Periods Change Lives

Once girls get their period in low- and middle-income countries where resources are low, their lives change — sometimes irreparably.

When girls get their periods they oftentimes have to drop out of school and work around their home instead. And on top of that, many cannot afford sanitary napkins.

Irise International, an East African organization, is fighting the stigma of menstruation and providing easy, affordable solutions for girls when they get their periods.

See their work in their video: Periods Change Lives

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Featured Video: African Women Musicians Join ONE for Strong Girl Anthem

Today ONE launched its Strong Girl anthem to empower girls worldwide and as a follow-up to its recent Poverty is Sexist report.

Strong Girl features vocalists Waje (Nigeria), Victoria Kimani (Kenya), Vanessa Mdee (Tanzania), Arielle T (Gabon), Gabriela (Mozambique), Yemi Alade (Nigeria), Selmor Mtukudzi (Zimbabwe), Judith Sephuma (South Africa), new talent Blessing Nwafor (South Africa) and the video stars Omotola Jalade Ekeinde (Nigeria).

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[Photos] Haiti Works Toward Eliminating Maternal Tetanus

Casimer Dieuvela, 24 years old and five months pregnant, lives two to three hours walk from her monthly health post in Deschappelles, Haiti, but she goes despite the distance to receive her tetanus shot. It’s her third time coming to the health post run by health agent Junior Exanthus and arranged by Hôpital Albert Schweitzer (HAS). Dieuvela brings her daughter to receive her full course of vaccinations. HAS also immunizes … Continue reading [Photos] Haiti Works Toward Eliminating Maternal Tetanus

Save the Children Sounds Alarm on Plight of the World’s Urban Poor

When you think about very low- and middle-income countries you might assume that the poor in deep rural pockets in these countries have the highest chance for maternal and infant mortality. That isn’t the case according to Save the Children’s latest State of the World’s Mothers report released today.

The report says that it is the urban poor in countries like Haiti, Somalia, Niger and Mali, for example, who are suffering the most and have less access to health care, nutrition services, sanitation and clean water. Even as child mortality has decreased by 49 percent since 1990, the numbers do not fully tell the entire story. While resources have successfully helped the rural populations, the urban poor continue to suffer from a lack of overall services that will allow them to live and thrive.

“Our new report reveals a devastating child survival divide between the haves and have-nots, telling a tale of two cities among urban communities around the world, including the United States,” said Carolyn Miles, president and CEO of Save the Children in a statemtn. “For babies born in the big city, it’s survival of the richest.”

New data says there are 54 percent of the world’s population lives in urban areas. 860 million people live in urban slums in big cities like Delhi, Nairobi, Rio, and Johannesburg where the disparity between the rich and poor is incredibly stark. In fact, poor children in urban areas are two times more likely to die than their richer peers. In some countries, poor children are up to five times more likely to die before the age of five than their peers in a much higher income bracket.

Slum area - Addis Ababa
Slum area – Addis Ababa

Urban slums continue to grow because poor migrants from rural areas seek jobs in cities. This causes squatter communities and slum-dwelling as well as a perpetual cycle of poverty. These migrants often believe that it is better to live in crowded slums in the city than in their rural home towns because they can at least find work. The tradeoff, however, comes in the form of poor living conditions.

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41 Maternal Health Organizations to Follow and Support #IntlMHDay

Today is the 2nd annual International Day of Maternal Health and Rights which calls attention to and demands action for the right of every woman to respectful maternity care no matter where she lives in the world. This is critical because a woman dies in childbirth every two minutes totalling nearly 300,000 maternal deaths each year. Ninety-nine percent of these deaths are wholly preventable.

Many pregnant women are also subject to excessive, disrespectful care including verbal and physical abuse during pregnancy and childbirth as well as denial of care and demands for payment before care.  As these scenarios continue more awareness needs to be made about quality, respectful care for every pregnant woman. It’s their right!

In honor of International Day of Maternal Health and Rights we put together a list of 41 maternal health organizations and organizations that work on other global health efforts of which maternal health is one. Please support and follow them. If we missed your organization, please email us at info@mombloggersforsocialgood.com with your Twitter handle. We plan to make an additional list in the coming weeks.

1. aroadlesstravelled @ARLTafric: Working with nomadic pastoralist communities in Ethiopia & Kenya to improve maternal & child health.

2. ARROW ‏@ARROW_Women: Championing Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights #SRHR #SRHR4all

3. CAN-MNCH @CAN_MNCH: Over 80 organizations working to improve the lives of women, babies and children in over 1,000 regions around the world. Team Canada!

4. CARE(care.org) @CARE: CARE fights global poverty by empowering girls and women. Visit http://CARE.org and join us.

5. CHANGE ‏@genderhealth: The Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE) works to advance the sexual and reproductive health and rights of women and girls worldwide.

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ONE Campaign Reports that Global Poverty is Deeply Rooted in Sexism

Featured Photo: Paolo Patruno – www.birthisadream.org

Today is International Women’s Day which calls upon the world to look at not only the seminal achievements women have made throughout history, but also assess the ways in which women and girls are being perpetually marginalized across the globe through sexist policies and cultural traditions. This sexism is further exacerbated in developing countries according to a new report just released by the ONE campaign, Poverty is Sexist: Why girls and women must be at the heart of the fight to end extreme poverty.

“It’s about time we refocused the development agenda on gender equity as a smart means of unleashing the potential for human, social, political and economic development everywhere,” says Dr Sipho S. Moyo, ONE Africa’s Executive Director. “This being the African Union Year of Women Empowerment, it is our opportunity to seize and promote the advancement of humankind by insisting on policy interventions by our African governments that promote and ensure equal opportunities for women and girls, especially in the poorest countries.

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International Women’s Day Puts Spotlight on Global Poverty, Gender Inequalities

International Women’s Day Twitter Chat

We will join Global Impact to discuss these aforementioned women’s and girls’ issues on Friday, March 13 at 1 PM EST. Join us using #HerDay2015.

In Ormoc, Philippines women tend to take on village leadership roles to ensure children under five get their scheduled vaccinations and routine check-ups. These women also provide medical information to mothers and families who live deep in the rural parts of Ormoc and have a harder time attaining health services.

1 billion victims of violence

These village leaders are, for all intents and purposes, the lifelines for these rural families to health care. In addition to village leaders, rural health units staffed by volunteer health workers and nutrition scholars are charged with providing essential health care and information to families who otherwise would go without medical care.

“Being a leader makes me happy, but it is difficult,” said Ludivinia Perez, a village leader in Ormoc, Philippines on Leyte island. “I feel good about it. What makes it difficult is if I don’t have enough funds and resources.”

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7 Facts About Premature Births You Might Not Have Known

Photo: A premature baby is shown in the postnatal ward at Cama Hospital, a major hospital for women and children, in Mumbai, India. UN Photo/Mark Garten

Premature births are now the number one killer of babies globally. Of the 6.3 million children under five who died last year, 1.1 million of them died due to complications from premature births. Most of these deaths occured within the first month of life, according to new research published in The Lancet.

“This marks a turning of the tide, a transition from infections to neonatal conditions, especially those related to premature births, and this will require entirely different medical and public health approaches,” says Joy Lawn, M.D., Ph.D., of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, a member of the research team and a long-term advisor to Save the Children. “The success we’ve seen in the ongoing fight against infectious diseases demonstrates that we can also be successful if we invest in prevention and care for preterm birth.”

Today is the the fourth World Prematurity Day, a global awareness campaign that focuses on the number of newborns that die every year and ways in which we can help those numbers decline. With heightened attention on premature births it is only a matter of time before global prematurity rates improve just as the overall child mortality statistics have improved steadily since 1990.

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One Mother’s Story Of Giving Birth in a Hospital Instead of At Home

Merida, Philippines – I met Jocelyn Pingos, 27, in Merida, Leyte on a bright, sunny tropical day in the Philippines. A mother of four, Jocelyn sat outside her local health center and waited patiently to have her youngest, Lenith, 10 months, looked at because of a nagging cough. Her second youngest, Jelenia, 3, was also with her. Jocelyn’s other children who are 9 and 6 were attending school.

When Jocelyn delivered Lenith earlier this year, she and her husband decided that she should have a tubal ligation two months after her delivery.

“I have no plans to have any more children,” Jocelyn said.

Lenith

Jocelyn delivered her two youngest, Jelenia and Lenith, at the local hospital. Her two oldest were delivered at home. “For the first two, the midwife came to my home,” Jocelyn remembered. “The midwife wasn’t available for the last two.”

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Women Helping Women in Johannesburg’s Townships

This post was originally published on Impatient Optimists. I met Jabulile Tlhabane, 57, in a small woman-owned restaurant on a busy road in Alexandra Township located about 60 minutes outside Johannesburg depending on the time of day and traffic. Alexandra, or Alex as the locals call it, is home to over a million people even though its resident capacity is intended to be capped at 100,000. That means … Continue reading Women Helping Women in Johannesburg’s Townships

How One Philanthropist is Changing Lives for India’s Women and Girls – Part II

By Indrani Goradia, founder of Wajood, a partnership between Indrani’s Light Foundation and PSI Yesterday we published How One Philanthropist is Changing Lives for India’s Women and Girls. Today we’re publishing part two of the piece. In this continuation, Indrani Goradia tells the stories of three women she met during her most recent trip to India to launch Wajood, a partnership between her organization, Indrani’s … Continue reading How One Philanthropist is Changing Lives for India’s Women and Girls – Part II

How One Philanthropist is Changing Lives for India’s Women and Girls

By Marshall Stowell, Editor-in-Chief, Impact magazine It’s been just over a week since philanthropist and advocate Indrani Goradia landed in India. She’s been many times before, her husband’s family is Indian and she is from Trinidad and Tobago, of Indian descent. But this is a different trip and fifty-plus years in the making. Not long ago, gender-based violence was viewed as a private, domestic affair. … Continue reading How One Philanthropist is Changing Lives for India’s Women and Girls