My thoughts as a Global Projects Officer
By Carmel Moran on 16 October 2017 Global midwifery
As my first couple of weeks here as Global Projects Officer draw to a close, I can safely say that if I were a midwife in the UK, I’d be pleased to know that there was such a dedicated team of individuals here for support!
This is the first time I’ve worked for a professional association. I have an international development background, having previously worked at THET (Tropical Health and Education Trust), where I was monitoring and evaluating health partnerships funded under the Health Partnership Scheme (HPS), which funded some of the RCM’s international projects.
After almost a year and a half building the capacity of organisations like the RCM to deliver global health projects, I’m so pleased to now be directly involved in implementing them. Earlier this year I was lucky enough to attend an event in Tanzania that gathered together health workers from low and middle income countries involved in the HPS. There I met two wonderful midwives from Nepal who had been part of an RCM twinning project. It was so interesting to hear about the challenges that they face in their day-to-day practice and how twinning had helped them, and little did I know that I would be joining the RCM just a few months later!
Global midwifery is something that I’m deeply passionate about, and that’s why I’m so excited to be working here. The fact is, whatever country they live in, women have the right to be cared for by a midwife that can save her and her baby’s life during labour, which is undoubtedly one of the most daunting moments a woman can experience.
We all know how vital midwives are and what an important job they do, but it’s even more challenging in a low-resource setting because of a lack of training, equipment, managerial structures and sometimes non-existent midwifery policies. By strengthening midwifery associations, we can empower midwives to improve their skills and working environments, and in turn they can empower the women they care for to make their own choices about their delivery. All of this will make the delivery room a safer place for midwives, mums and babies.
Over the next few months I’ll be supporting Joy (Global Professional Advisor) as we reflect on the amazing work that has been done internationally to understand where we go from here. We know from speaking to midwives involved in the twinning projects that they have learned so much from their Asian and African colleagues, but we now need to think about how we can evidence this, to give more impetus to our future work. We will also be raising the profile of the global work by showcasing accounts of how the projects have impacted midwifery associations, as well as personal stories from UK and overseas midwives about what twinning projects mean to them.
I look forward to sharing more information about the global work, but in the meantime if you would like to know more about what the RCM does in low and middle income countries, you can email [email protected].uk.