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Preventing Mother and Child mortality: Expectations from UN Women!

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Dear UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet,

I am so delighted and honored to represent and be the voice of women in my community. Also am very excited and grateful for the formation of the UN Women and would love to congratulate you on your post as the Executive Director for UN Women.

I am Ruun Abdi from Somalia, a researcher and peace activist. Empowering of women and girls is my main focus. One of the main concerns in Somalia is lack of knowledge and the child and mother mortality.

Infant, child and maternal mortality rates in Somalia are chronically high due to the long running crisis and resultant poverty and collapse of services.

Insecurity and poor access to the health care facilities as a result of the collapse of public institutions and lack of skilled medical staff makes Somalia one of the challenging countries in the world. Vaccination campaigns sometimes do not reach the mobile nomadic groups in the rural areas as they move from one place to another place.

Lack of knowledge for the importance of vaccination is another issue that increases the child and mother mortality rate as some mothers are not aware of the consequence if they don’t vaccinate their infants or themselves as well.

For example, Measles and its complications are serious threats to children. When outbreaks occur in malnourished populations with low levels of vaccination – the disease can spread rapidly resulting in high numbers of deaths.

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) has also an effect on child mortality. Girls undergo female circumcision between 5-12 years old in Somalia. The exposed vagina of clitoridectomized women is more likely to be infected resulting in high risk of stillbirths and premature births than the closed vagina of infibulated women.

To save lives of infants and mothers there is a need to get access to free health care facilities, improved Maternal and Child Health (MCH) facilities and availability of essential drugs. This also needs a wide awareness raising and women’s empowerment to be carried out in the community through media and trainings.

Provision of basic health care services can be complemented by giving supports to the development of institutional capacities, including training of health care personnel, support to the development of policies and continued health sector reform and coordination.

At this point I would love to ask the UN Women to put free access to health care facilities to save mother and child mortality in their agendas.

Regards,
Ruun Abdi
Puntland, Somalia.

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As the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women officially begins its work this month, World Pulse is asking women worldwide: What is YOUR vision and recommendation for UN Women? We invite you to raise your voice by writing a letter to UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet outlining your recommendation for how this new UN agency can truly affect change on the ground to promote gender equality and uphold the rights and needs of women both on a local and global scale.
Learn more: http://www.worldpulse.com/pulsewire/programs/international-violence-agai...

Comments

Hi sister! You're right, mothers should know best ... and women should know who they are and what they need! You really raised a very important issue, not only for Somalia, but for the rest of humanity! My salute, Ruun!

Always,
Emie Zozobrado

Ruun Abdi's picture

Dear sis, Thank you so much

Dear sis,

Thank you so much for taking time to read ma post and leaving me with such a great comment. Yeah it's true mothers need care and they also need the knowledge of everything they are doing to prevent their children from diseases. Lack of knowledge sometimes causes mothers not to vaccinate their children to prevent certain diseases, not only Somalis but also some other countries.

Warmest regards,
RA

Sarvina's picture

Hi Ruun, Thanks so much for

Hi Ruun,

Thanks so much for sharing your powerful letter to us! I am so interested reading your voice, your suggestion will be reached to Executive Director Michelle Bachelet and also for all women in your community will have new lives. Education is so important to develop ourselves, the country and also the world.

Love,
Sarvina

Regards,

Sarvina from Cambodia
VOF 2011 Correspondent

Ruun Abdi's picture

Dear Sarvina, Thank you so

Dear Sarvina,

Thank you so much for going through my post and getting back to me with such a wonderful inspiring comment. I hope the lives of mother everywhere in this world will improve and they leave happily. Of course education and knowledge is everything, if the person is ignorant they don't know what they are doing or what they were suppose to do.

Warmest regards,
RA

Sarvina's picture

Of course Ruun, education is

Of course Ruun, education is so important to bring our lives better. I am also moved by you..I have learned from you how to be a strong lady.

Love,
Sarvina

Regards,

Sarvina from Cambodia
VOF 2011 Correspondent

Ruun Abdi's picture

Me too really. You always

Me too really. You always encourage me and inspire me ever since we became friends even before we became VOF correspondents. Many thanks to God and to worldpulse who made this easy for us.

Peace and love,
RA

Sarvina's picture

Oh really sweet words!

Oh really sweet words!

Love,
Sarvina

Regards,

Sarvina from Cambodia
VOF 2011 Correspondent

jadefrank's picture

Healthcare and health education

Dearest Ruun,

Thank you for participating in this campaign, by using your voice and speaking out for women who have unequal access to basic health care, and health education. Your letter is beautifully written, and your voice is strong!

In two weeks, we will compile your letters and share your voices with the GEAR Campaign, who have been working closely with UN Women to ensure the inclusion of civil society groups, and through the PulseWire community, grassroots women leaders, as they set their agenda. We will also be sending your letters directly to Michele Bachelet and other senior leaders of the newly formed UN agency, to demonstrate the effectiveness for sourcing opinion, knowledge and needs from the global grassroots women's movement through our online community. Through this, we hope to open a portal for our community to have a direct line of influence within the UN Women agency.

I will keep you updated on the progress of our campaign!

In friendship and solidarity,
Jade

Ruun Abdi's picture

Dearest Jade, Thank you so

Dearest Jade,

Thank you so much for taking time to go through my post and get back to me with such a wonderful and inspiring comment. Everytime i recieve feedback from you it keeps me going and gives me the courage to keep writing.
All our voices combined am sure there will be changes even if it takes sometime.

Warmest regards,
RA.

vivian's picture

You have picked up my area of

You have picked up my area of interest and presented it so well. I hat off for you sister.

Vivian

''Every woman have a story at every stage of Life''

Ruun Abdi's picture

Thank you so much dear

Thank you so much dear vivian.

Cheers,
RA

aimeeknight's picture

My dear sister, your letter

My dear sister, your letter is wonderful. Your writing gets better and better, I am so proud o f you. You presented a kind greeting, straightforward facts and potential solutions. All of this is excellent; it was a privilege to read.
Thank you!

"One shoe can change a life" ~ Cinderella

Ruun Abdi's picture

Dearest Aimee, Thank you so

Dearest Aimee,

Thank you so much for the lovely encouraging comment. Though it's short letter but i hope i made the point i was trying to say.

Regards,
RA

Jim Kavanaugh's picture

introduction and request

Dear Ruun Abdi:
I am a psychologist living in the United States with my 17 year old daughter and my wife from El Salvador. I’m also a graduate student in journalism, writing a Masters thesis on the high rates of child mortality in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. The thesis explores the links between social research on helping responses to distant victims – and models of mass media communication that apply research principles, advocate for life threatened children, and foster compassionate action among citizens in wealthier nations. Kimberly Crane, the Assistant Editor of World Pulse, suggested that you might be a good person to contact with regards to my thesis.

As part of my study I have been interviewing a range of communication specialists and journalists engaged in work related to the thesis topic. I believe that the work of World Pulse, and all its members, is an important example of a nonprofit organization that saves the lives of remote rural children by giving a voice to women. I have read your story of child health challenges in Somalia, and am writing to thank you for your work, and to ask if you might participate in a brief Skype interview with me. I don’t expect it to take longer than 30 minutes.

It would be an honor to talk with you on this issue of mutual importance. For me it was a trip through Africa that turned my life around and set me on a road of public service, including three years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Kenya. During my career as a health professional I decided to study journalism and become a better advocate for neglected children. My thesis is a small contribution to this effort. Please let me if you receive this message, and if can participate in an interview. I can be reached at kavanaughnm@yahoo.com. Many thanks.

Ruun Abdi's picture

Dear Jim, Thanks for

Dear Jim,

Thanks for contacting me, its really my pleasure to hear from you.

So sorry for the delay the internet connection at my place was down, they were doing some maintenance and it was unpredictable of how its gonna be, and sometimes it wasnt there completely. That is why it took me up to this time to respond you. It would be my pleasure to accept the interview and its an honor to me.

I sent you my contact info to your inbox, please check it out.

As for the interview how about next weekend (on 15 or 16 Oct) at around 4:30Pm my time (am about 10 hours or so ahead)? I work between 7:30am and 2:30Pm after that I am usually at home and can sign in anytime afterwards unless my internet connection lets me down.

Best of luck with the thesis and hope to hear from you soon.

Regards.

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