How does an NGO combine sustainable energy with family planning and reproductive health services? It can only happen in Africa, where there’s serious demand for both. Pathfinder International’s integrated programs in Uganda are helping to kill two giant birds with one stone. Remote Bussi Island, in Lake Victoria, is home to a number of small fishing communities. The island has little infrastructure and is not connected to the national grid. Most people use small paraffin (kerosene) lamps to see at night, provided they can afford to buy the paraffin. Pathfinder, who has been working to improve maternal health and increase access to family planning services on the island for several years, knew that nurses and other health care workers struggled to carry out essential services once the sun set. Solar-generated electricity became the solution for Bussi’s Health Center as well as other health centers in the country. Above, a woman[…]Read More
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Where There Is No Doctor
Pathfinder International’s mobile health care camps bring family planning services, HIV testing, ante-natal care, and immunizations to isolated communities that otherwise would not have access to health services. The following were taken on a rainy day in Kyanjojo and Kasese, in Western Uganda. “The hospital is very far and there are no midwives to attend to them in case a woman goes into labor at night… We are losing very many mothers. You never know which pregnancy will not be proper or which pregnancy will lead to death,” says midwife Harriet Kegonzi, shown above. Pathfinder also emphasizes contraception as a principal method of bringing down high maternal mortality rates. With more than six children per mother on average, Uganda consistently ranks among the highest fertility rates in the world.Read More