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Celebrate Solutions: Community educators change perceptions of child marriage in Yemen

By: Rati Bishnoi, Special Projects Intern at Women Deliver

yemengirls.jpgNearly one-half or 48 percent of girls in Yemen are married by the age of 18 years old, with 14 percent married by the time they turn 15 years old. In addition, it is common for girls in remote areas to be betrothed as young as 9 years old and for 57 percent of girls living in poverty to be married age 18. Read more...

G8 Leaders Recommit to Improve Maternal Health and Reduce Child Mortality

The 37th G8 Summit was held in Deauville, France from May 26-27, 2011. The three priorities of the French Presidency of the G8 Summit were the internet and green growth, international peace and security and partnership with Africa. Though health was not a priority of the G8 this year, the Deauville statement reaffirmed a commitment to improving maternal health and reducing child mortality, most notably through the Muskoka Initiative for Maternal, Newborn and Child health launched in 2010. Read more...

Celebrate Solutions: Free caesarean policy increases utilization in Mali, but challenges remain

By: Rati Bishnoi, Special Projects Intern at Women Deliver

Mali_mother.jpgThe government of Mali in 2005 began offering free caesarean sections in public hospitals, health clinics, and army hospitals. The policy change was driven by the reality that high maternal costs often prevent women from giving birth in health care facilities—and catastrophic costs, such as for caesareans, have the “potential to plunge a household into poverty.” Six years later, the policy is associated with a steady increase in caesarean rates, a drop in maternal and neonatal mortality, and a rise in institutional deliveries in the West African nation, according to a recent report by USAID’s Health System 20/20. Read more...

Delivering Real Results and Resources for Girls and Women

By: Jill Sheffield, President of Women Deliver

Last week, the UN Commission on Women and Children’s Health released the final report, “Keeping Promises, Measuring Results,” with recommendations that will serve to hold countries and organizations accountable for the commitments they make to save the lives of girls, women and children around the world. I am honored to have been a part of this Commission. The brief and intense process has produced an accountability framework to deliver real results and resources for girls and women through monitoring, review and action. Read more...

Live From Kenya: Equal Treatment at Birth

By: Rachel Cernansky, winner of the Women Bloggers Deliver contest

In rural Kenya, a majority of women give birth at home and without a skilled attendant--often because hospitals, and the transportation to even get to a hospital, are simply too expensive and inaccessible for so many women.

Now imagine the situation for HIV-positive women, who should give birth by C-section to reduce the risk of transmission from mother to child. According to the Ministry of Health, only 65 percent of hospitals in the country provide that procedure. It's also more expensive, so even if it's locally available, it's not always a realistic option. Read more...

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