I have been here for several days and have written a couple of blog posts about the projects we have visited. I've been having wifi issues so no pics yet, but I have tweeted some pics - you can follow me @lynncschreiber to see them.
I've met an amazing woman who is a Mother Mentor in a HIV/AIDS support project. She meets newly diagnosed mothers and helps them come to terms with their illness and learn how to increase the chances that their babies will be HIV negative.
She was so inspiring. She told me that she is living positively and is so happy that her son is a Negative Baby. She now tells other women about family planning and how to access it. The program is run by the CDC - who are doing amazing things for rural communities.
Women walk for hours to health clinics only to find that they are out of contraceptive supplies.
The Gates Foundation is teaming up with the UK government to host a worldwide family planning summit in London this July.
I will also be linking to the blogs of the others on the trip.
Also interesting is the fear that all the aid workers have here of the prospect of Mitt Romney winning the US election. The reintroduction of the gag rule would affect funding for projects in this area.
We visited a local dispensary today where they offer vaccinations and family planning advice. Will be writing about the women there later. An African blogger suggested I take sanitary protection, because the girls here don't have any and it means they stay home from school.
I handed over 2 packets of sanitary pads and some cheap tesco knickers. You'd think I'd brought them gold.
I asked what they use when they don't have san pro and she said they cut up rags and old blankets.
I'm hoping to start a campaign when I get back to send the group I met some products. I hope that MN will support this
LeBof I am going to find out the best way of doing this, not sure yet. I am sure that there are people out here who can help me set something up (or find a programme that is already in place that we can support)
I was at the CDC, an US organisation for disease control and prevention and they are doing a mooncup trial in the next year. I will be writing about that next week.
Hassled that is what the CDC will be looking into. Their program will look into ways of coping with the hygiene issues. There is a similar program running in South Africa, so will be looking into that.