Maternal Health “Ah ha!” Moment - Peace Corps Service Leads to Career as a Midwife

In this video,Peace Corps Volunteer Caitlin Givens talks about her “Ah ha!” moment in the Sahel desert that led her to shift career paths and become a midwife. During nursing and midwifery school, she serves as a doula and helps women plan for labor and birth. She now draws from her Peace Corps experience to connect with and care for women from diverse backgrounds in the U.S.

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"It’s possible to end this – in our lifetime. What we need are not slogans about African Illnesses, emotional appeals to Save Those In Need, or personal campaigns to Guilt Everyone Into Donating Money. My neighbors here in Senegal are working diligently to protect themselves from infection."
- Austin Post-Bulletin highlight on 3rd year volunteer Michael Toso (via stompoutmalaria)

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Working in Malaria prevention is important primarily, because the disease is comparatively simple to prevent and yet remains a leading cause of death throughout Africa and many other parts of the developing world. Through the proper use of bed nets, covering up exposed skin during evening hours, and removing/covering sources of standing water around your home diminish the mosquito population and therefore your chances of catching malaria.  

From personal experience and living in Mozambique for the past 2 years, I can easily say that Malaria is one of the most diagnosed and treated cases at our local Hospital, and that all of my neighbors have been diagnosed or treated for malaria at some point in my service. I also say this while we are in the middle of our rainy season here in Mozambique, and already Malaria cases are beginning to skyrocket as the mosquito population begins to boom.

 Peace Corps Volunteer Jason Hillis


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Zambia, World Malaria Day 2012
The National Malaria Control Centre organized mobile clinics around townships to screen, test, and treat people.
The Peace Corps Stomp Out Malaria Coordinator Jane Coleman and a Linking Income and Food Environment Volunteer Laura Walls walked around with community health workers and their loud speakers, letting people know to come to the mobile clinic to get tested!
Jane and Laura spent the rest of the morning with the patients and staff screening, testing and treating mothers, children under five and even some of their fathers.
People were lined up around the clinic and many people went home with Coartem and will be happy and healthy for the month of May!

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