WHY MAKE BIRTHING KITS?
The United Nations (WHO) estimated in 1996 that 585,000 women died annually in childbirth. Developing countries accounted for 99% of these deaths. For every woman who dies in childbirth, another 30 women incur injuries and infections - many of which are often painful, disabling, embarrassing and lifelong.
Ways recommended to help reduce these statistics are:
1. preventing unwanted pregnancies
2. improving antenatal care
3. improving capacity for dealing with obstetric complications
4. providing clean birthing conditions
ZONTA BIRTHING KITS provide for a clean birth that may decrease the risk of death from infection and bleeding.
60 million women give birth each year with the assistance of a Traditional Birth Attendant or no assistance at all. These women need a birthing kit.
Over 4000 traditional birth attendants and village health workers have been trained in hygiene, nutrition and midwifery through our funded traiining programs in Vietnam and Kenya!!
In Vietnam the first steps towards sustainability are happening with the Hanoi International Women's Club paying USD$16,000 for 19,000 kits to be made in Hanoi to supply two provinces and AusCHAM paying USD$11,500 to pay for a training program in Binh Phuoc province.
HOW DO BIRTHING KITS WORK?
A Birthing Kit works by providing the 7 cleans for a clean birth:
- Clean birth site - preventing delivery onto the floor
- Clean hands - to prevent the birth attendant transmitting germs to mother and baby
- Clean ties - to prevent bleeding from the umbilical cord for mother and baby.
- Clean razor - to reduce infection caused by other implements
- Clean gauze - to wipe away birth canal secretions from the eyes, which decreases future eye infections
- Clean umbilical cord - washing and drying the stumps prevents infection
- Clean perineum
WHAT IS A BIRTHING KIT?
THE CONTENTS OF A ZONTA BIRTHING KIT
1m x 1m plastic sheet for the mother to lie on
A piece of soap
3 gauze squares
3 cord ties or 2 clamps
Sterile scalpel blade.
All contained in a small press seal plastic bag.
Each kit costs Aus $3 to produce and transport
HOW BIRTHING KITS ARE ASSEMBLED:
The birthing kits are made at Assembly Days by Zonta members, family, friends and potential new members. 2000 birthing kits can be assembled in 4 hours with 40 volunteers. We ask clubs to book a suitable venue. The supplies are delivered to a member who then delivers the supplies to the venue where volunteers set up the room ready to assemble the kits.
We ask all organisers to read the Assembly Day Manual and especially take note of the Hygiene Standards needed on the day. The most curent manual can always be downloaded from the Birthing Kit Foundation website.
| Assembly Days are a wonderful opportunity for fellowship and for potential new members and friends to hear about our project. Many Assembly days are organized with schools. Walford Anglican Girls School has produced over 2200 birthing kits for PNG in 2 years. Other schools involved include Annesley College, Mary Mount School, Mitcham Girls High School, St Johns Grammar and Adelaide High School.
How can your Zonta club help?
Over 1,000,000 kits have been made and distributed through 40 organisations to 30 countries since 2004!
Clubs in Australia and overseas – contact the Birthing Kit Foundation to organise an Assembly day of your own. Have a look at their website for details https://www.bkfa.org.au
ZONTA INTERNATIONAL SERVICE PROJECTS
- 2010-2012 Safe Cities for Women in Guatemala City, Guatemala and San Salvador, El Salvador with UN Women (The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women) In 2008-2010 the Zonta International Foundation provided $600,000 for this project to increase the safety of women in Guatemala City, Guatemala and San Salvador, El Salvador by helping local women collaborate with the local government and urban planners to create practical solutions, public policies, and municipal plans that decrease the risk of violence against women in their cities. The project built on a larger, ongoing UNIFEM regional effort in four other Latin America urban areas.
- 2010-2012 Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV in Rwanda with UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund) provides health care, prenatal and obstetrical services, and links to reproductive health programs, nutritional support, psychosocial services and income-generating activities to HIV-positive mothers.
- 2010-2012 Reduction of Obstetric Fistula (Within the context of Maternal and Newborn Health) in Liberia with UNFPA (United nations Population Fund) contributes to the elimination of obstetric fistula and the reduction of maternal and newborn mortality and morbidity in Liberia.
- 2008 - 2010 Working Toward an HIV-Free Generation and Effective Prevention and Response to Gender Based Violence in Rwanda and Towards Elimination of Obstetric Fistula and Reduction of Maternal and Newborn Mortality and Morbidity
- 2006 - 2008 CARE International: Mata Masu Dubara (Women on the Move)
Support for AIDS-Affected Women and Children in Niger, Phase II
- 2004 - 2006 Mata Masu Dubara (Women on the Move): Microcredit and Health Education for HIV/AIDS- Affected Women in Niger
- 2002 - 2004 Afghanistan. Zonta International is funding UNICEF in the vaccination of 35,000 women against tetanus
- 1998 - 2002 Nepal. Zonta International funded UNICEF in the vaccination of 800,000 women against Tetanus.
THE ZONTA BIRTHING KIT PROJECT COMPLIMENTS THE ZONTA INTERNATIONAL PROJECTS