By Emily Capolupo ’20
“303,000 women die every year as a result of complications during pregnancy and childbirth. That’s one woman every two minutes. For each of these deaths, an average of 4 orphans are left behind. Ninety-nine percent of maternal deaths take place in the developing world, however, we lose two women every day here in the U.S. Up to Ninety-eight percent of these deaths are preventable.”
These are the words on the first page of the website for Every Mother Counts, a non-profit organization that strives to make pregnancy and childbirth safer for mothers around the world.
Every Mother Counts collects money for transportation, supplies, and education for healthcare workers to create better conditions for pregnant women worldwide. Many mothers in third world countries do not have a means of getting to a clinic. Even if they have access to such resources, certain clinics do not have access to the right supplies or even electricity.
The organization works to provide for places that do not even have the bare minimum of proper prenatal care. Every Mother Counts also possesses a maternal and child health emergency response fund to help pregnant mothers in the middle of a humanitarian crisis or natural disaster.
Every Mother Counts was founded by model Christy Turlington Burns in 2012 after having childbirth complications herself. Learning about the alarmingly high number of preventable deaths inspired her to take action, thus sparking the movement.
Over the years, Burns has travelled to countries in the developing world such as Haiti and Ethiopia to see how her work has impacted them. Seeing the struggles these women go through can be tough to watch, since she has witnessed a number of newborns who did not survive due to the lack of prenatal care.
Still, she expresses that taking trips to these countries “motivates [her] daily efforts” and inspires her to continue making an impact.
Every Mother Counts aides a total of thirteen developing countries with the highest rates of maternal deaths. They collaborate with the countries’ local organizations to solve the root of the problem and fix it. This charity has raised a total of thirteen million dollars since its inception and they estimate that they have impacted at least 400,000 lives.
Every mother and child deserve the best possible conditions for childbirth and the guarantee that they will be safe. Even just one donation could change the life of a mother who otherwise may not have been in the right condition to have a child.
You can use the following URL to go to the website and make a donation today- https://www.everymothercounts.org/products/donate