The rainy season is coming soon. In the mountains close to la Ceiba, there are a lot of small communities, which often will be cut off from the next hospital during the rainy season, as the rivers can raise so high and, as there is no bridge, there is no way to cross it.
For this reason often pregnant women close to their due date, or women in labor, get trapped in the mountains, which caused in the last years maternal and newborn death, as the local traditional midwives have become very old, and are often not any longer able to assist with their life long experience. Besides of this they often has not been prepared for emergency situations, as a baby which does not breath after birth or a sudden upcoming hemorrhage of a women.
Midwives ‘parteras’ in Honduras do often not get any formal training.
The tradition of passing the knowledge down to the next generation is almost dying out. For this we are so happy, that finally we found around 10 ‘younger’ women, which want to learn more about pregnancy, birth and postnatal care to be able to support women in their communities during and around birth. Also they want to learn how to deal with emergency situations. Women that want to take the responsibility in their communities to become midwives for their communities.
We did a lot of midwife meetings and hold workshops in this region in the past.
With this new, younger midwives I thought, we should have one to one, or a small group training program.
With Griet, midwife from Belgium and fluent in Spanish, we have been able to start this program. She went to the mountains and taught resuscitation of the newborn to two small groups, and also went with the “new” midwives to visit pregnant women at their homes to do prenatal checks. She taught, for example, how they can detect the position of the baby with the Leopold maneuver. And showed, how to measure fundus hight with their fingers and the importance of this two techniques.
In total Griet had four midwife ‘students’, Inez, Vilma, Caya and Elena. They have been very happy and grateful to receive a more intense training, and they are already looking forward to the next one.
From my side a huge thanks to you Griet for going there, and for being at the moment with us in la Moskitia to do a similar work.