The public hospitals of Honduras serve predominantly poor women from both cities and remote rural areas. Often women travel many hours to give birth in these public hospitals, which are often severely underfunded.
When a woman is admitted to the labor and delivery ward of the hospital, they leave all personal belongings behind and they enter alone. In most cases family members or support persons are not permitted to accompany them. Women labor in one room, often with little or no privacy, and give birth next to each other. Hospital rules are frequently very restrictive. Pillows and towels are mostly non-existent, and sheets and gowns are in short supply. First-time mothers are often very young (13-17 years old) and afraid.
There is an enormous need for emotional and physical support for these women during childbirth. Hospital staff are generally not trained to provide psycho-emotional support to these women.
Dar a Luz provides labor support and developed several education programs for local staff to create more conscience, awareness and sensitivity for birthing women.
Dar a Luz is in the process of creating a doula training program for the local Honduran community.
Women should receive respect and consideration as they birth. The environment a woman is in when she births will have a great impact over the outcome and subsequent chapters of her life.
Find out about applying to volunteer with Dar a Luz Honduras.