Giving birth is RAW, intertwined with emotions of joy, anticipation, vulnerability, power and for many filled with fear and pain.
It can bring about the greatest moment of transformation for a woman and for many women living in the rural areas of Africa it can bring death to themselves and their newborn babies.
As I revisit the waves and surges of energy seering through my body awaiting my new baby's arrival, I am left feeling so utterly privileged to have had her in a safe, warm, clean space. A space where I didn’t have to fear dying shortly after giving birth due to water born infections- a space filled with helpful caring hands to catch her.
Hands that held me up as my body quaked and surged with each wave of labour.
Hands that supported me, hands that held space for me...CLEAN hands.
How honoured am I to have had this experience of joy, bliss and comfort knowing that my fifth baby and I were in competent, knowledgeable, clean hands. Not for a second did I take for granted how fortunate I was to be able to manage my postpartum body with proper hygiene with dignity. To be able to hold my healthy, robust newborn in my arms and feel her warmth against my chest.
This isn’t the reality for many mothers in less developed countries.
Nyaragusu is a small town in Tanzania.In 2017, the local health clinic served about 54,000 people in the district with maternal and general health services with only 7 staff. There were no taps, no pumps, not even a well in walking distance. The clinic used water vendors — sometimes nurses purchased water with their own money. Patients had to bring water with them, hauled from wells or a nearby RIVER. There were no washrooms as we know it but rather pit latrines, filthy and full. The impact of this situation on new mothers and their newborns was devastating. The Huffington post shares the heartbreaking stats:
'Nearly two newborns out of every 100 born in Tanzania will die before they are a month old; an estimated one in five of these die from infection and sepsis linked to unhygienic conditions. And for every 1,000 pregnant women in Tanzania, nearly four women will die of complications of pregnancy or childbirth, including infection and sepsis, making it one of the most difficult places in the world to become a mother. (By comparison, Canada's maternal mortality rate is 11 per 100,000).'
We are privileged. I will not turn my back on those who don’t share the same reality.
This is OUR WHY- we can’t turn our backs on the women who have had to bury their children due to lack of clean water. This reality CAN by changed and WaterAid Canada is working tirelessly to change these horrific circumstances by bringing safe water and basic sanitation to faculties like the one outlined above- improving the birth stories of thousands of women.
This is where the money is going when you purchase one of our timepieces- your purchases are helping us to fund the NECESSARY work that WaterAid is achieving in health clinics in Geita and Nyang’hwale districts of Tanzania.
So far, with the Canadian government matching initiative we have donated 50k to WaterAid Canada- we are just getting started and we could have done this without your support.
The GOOD NEWS- clean water is now flowing in many of the 12 Health Centres in Tanzania that we have been contributing to. Mothers no longer have to walk in labour carrying their own water for their delivery! Hand washing stations, a placenta pit and an incinerator are in place to help stop the transmission of infections.
This coming month we will be releasing a new collection of Women’s watches, one of which we have designed specifically to raise even more awareness of the need for water purification and mindfuln
You have POWER, your purchases have power.
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”
Margaret Mead’s quote speaks to the power of people mobilization; the power of true change that starts from the bottom, or from many places but not necessarily from the top; it speaks to the power of social movements.
Our family operated company may be small, but we are driven by soul, heart and an unwavering compulsion to help make a difference in the lives of women, families and children.
Our newest Revival by Martin & Co. member:
Vera Maria Emma Martin, born Oct.1/19 on my 40th birthday!