Dying to Deliver: Surviving labour in sub-Saharan Africa: The Flight for Every Mother (FEM) is flying high to raise awareness and action about maternal health in sub-Saharan Africa. UK obstetrician and pilot Dr Sophia Webster, and her team are on the wing to Cape Town, South Africa from where they will fly back England via 23 African countries** with high maternal mortality rates.
The FEM flight path targets countries furthest from reaching Millennium Development Goal 5 - to reduce maternal mortality and improve maternal health. The FEM team will stop along the way to provide labour ward teaching and offer donations of basic equipment in local facilities caring for pregnant women and raise awareness about maternal health. Flight for Every Mother will also fund-raise for the Girl Child Education Fund and six other charities*, chosen because their sustainable work focuses on a different aspect of maternal health.
Many factors impact reproductive health outcomes for women, including little or no formal education, early marriage, teenage pregnancy, violence, poverty and poor access to skilled health care. The project aims to draw attention and to raise funds via sponsorship. The FEM pilots will create an international following by way of an on-line blog detailing their challenging journey.
Dr Sophia Webster has a passion for global maternal health and travels regularly to countries in sub-Saharan Africa to teach clinical skills to doctors, nurses, midwives and community health workers. The FEM project is sponsored by the UK Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.
* GCEF, AMREF, SMILE, Life for African Mothers, Transaid, 28toomany, mothers2mothers
** South Africa, Lesotho, Swaziland, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Kenya, South Sudan, Sudan, Chad, Cameroon, Nigeria, Benin, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Sierra Leone, Senegal, the Gambia, Western Sahara and Morocco