Every two minutes a woman living in third world conditions dies of complications related to pregnancy and childbirth.
Annually, an estimated 385,000 women die from preventable infection.
This is where birthing kits are vital.
In 2017-18, the Zonta Club of Bendigo raised $6000 to fund the production of 2000 kits.
The club is inviting volunteers from the community to help assemble more kits.
Volunteers are welcome to attend for just an hour, or for longer if they have time, bookings not necessary.
The small lightweight kit provides a clean birth environment to reduce infection-related deaths.
It is estimated that for every 11 birthing kits distributed, a mother or baby’s life is saved.
In 2016–17 the kits produced in Bendigo were sent to remote locations in Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
It is estimated that in 2018, Zonta’s 2000 kits could save another 180 lives and provide a hygienic birthing environment for many others.
The birthing kits contain:
A plastic sheet to prevent mother and baby from contacting a dirt floor.
Soap and gloves to prevent the birth attendant transmitting germs to the mother and baby and to clean the mother’s perineum.
Gauze to clean the baby’s eyes of birth canal secretions.
A sterile scalpel blade to provide a clean cut of the umbilical cord, thus reducing infection.
A clean cord to prevent bleeding from the umbilical cord.
Participation in the production of birthing kits is regarded as a great opportunity for community service by many local schools.
This year, volunteer students from local secondary schools are helping the Zonta club produce some birthing kits in the lead up to the assembly day.
The Zonta birthing kit assembly day will be held on Saturday, September 15 from 9.30pm until 3pm.
The day will he held at the Language Centre of Bendigo Senior Secondary College.
For directions turn into Gaol Road Bendigo – turn into BSSC car park opposite the Bendigo Bowls Club Car Park and look for the Zonta banner.