According to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), maternal mortality has declined 44 percent since 1990; however, approximately 830 women still die every day from causes related to pregnancy or childbirth, including more than 500 women in humanitarian and fragile settings. For every woman who dies, 20 to 30 more will experience serious complications with often long-lasting consequences.
Most of these deaths and injuries are entirely preventable, which is why since 2008, Zonta International has committed US$2,550,000 to UNFPA to eliminate obstetric fistula and reduce maternal mortality and morbidity in Liberia. And for the coming two years, we have made an additional commitment of 1 million US Dollars to the Liberia Fistula Project.
It is also why Zonta International has joined the Safe Birth Even Here campaign to raise awareness of the high rate of maternal deaths in emergency situations and increase support for services to protect the rights of the women and girls living in humanitarian and fragile settings. This includes access to maternal health care, family planning services, sexual health information and gender-based violence prevention and responses.
On Tuesday, 20 September, Zonta International, represented by United Nations Committee Chairman Leslie Wright, joined UNFPA and representatives of Bayer, Benetton, General Electric, and Johnson & Johnson in New York to officially pledge its support for the Safe Birth Even Here campaign.
Read more about Tuesday’s event from UNFPA and visit the Safe Birth Even Here campaign website.