Safe Childbirth In Rural Nigeria
SDG #3.1 - 3.2

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Neonatal deaths are inextricably linked to the conditions of delivery and newborn care. Many women die every year during pregnancy and childbirth as a result of conditions that could have been prevented or treated. Poor quality of care due to an insufficient number of skilled health workers and lack of basic equipment, as well as long distances from home to health care facilities are major deterrents to facility delivery. Women living in rural areas, those who come from the poorest families and those who are less educated, have the least access to skilled attendance at delivery.

Nigeria has a shortage of well-equipped, community- based facilities, and trained healthcare workers. With limited access to transportation, poor road conditions, and an under-resourced health system, many women do not receive timely, quality care.

Within the project we will focus on training local health care providers, providing lifesaving resources and community outreach and health education for mothers, improving access to care for women in rural settings.

Training of midwives and nurses in Nigeria by WHRF and YORGHAS Foundation;
Global Goodwill Ambassadors Foundation

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With a Maternal Mortality Ratio of 630 per 100,000 live births, Nigeria contributes a large number of deaths. Nigeria, in the past few years has experienced some worsening of child mortality. The infant mortality rate evaluated at 100 per 1000 in 2003 was measured at 87 in 1990. This can be in part explained by the persisting low numbers of births occurring in health facilities and the low number of births attended by trained healthcare service providers. In 2003, two-thirds of the births in Nigeria still occurred at home. In addition, only slightly more than one-third of births are attended by doctors, nurses, or midwives. In 2000 the maternal mortality ratio in Nigeria was 800 per 100 000 live births.

It is apparent through the elevated mortality rates that the lack of access to or use of quality delivery services is an issue of immense importance in Nigeria. Problems such as obtaining money for treatment, distance to a health facility, and having to take transport are some of the many difficulties stated by women in describing difficulty with accessing healthcare.

The aforementioned lack of trained health care attended births in Nigeria is compounded by the fact that only six in ten mothers receive antenatal care from a trained medical professional. Nurses and midwives are the most frequently used source of healthcare. Good antenatal care can prevent the major causes of neonatal mortality in Nigeria — neonatal tetanus, malaria, and maternal anemia.

The consequences of the poor state of pregnant women in Nigeria are numerous and affect maternal as well as child mortality.

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This project aims to improve maternal health in rural areas in Nigeria through:

  • Providing maternal health services for underserved populations in a normal and natural village setting

  • Strengthening the efforts of the local health delivery system and encourage health care providers

  • Reducing morbidity and raise the level of awareness about mortality from common treatable diseases, family

    planning, HIV/AIDS among the communities

  • Increasing access to basic emergency obstetric care and to appropriate antenatal, peripartum and postpartum newborn and maternal health interventions

  • To meet the health needs of the most deprived and poorest people, in a place where they live.
    The long-term objective of the project is to reduce maternal and neonatal morbidity and mortality among children and mothers.



    You are heavily pregnant, about to go into labor. You walk and walk but no one will take you in. There is no shelter, no midwife, no way to relieve your pain. Eventually, you can go on no further. You settle down in a shack. What will happen to you? This may sound like a 2000-year-old story, but it is the reality of most rural women in Nigeria...

    In Nigeria lack of access to safe maternity services contributes to a range of adverse outcomes, from delayed treatment to disability and even death. With limited resources, it is not feasible to build and staff numerous static facilities that offer or meet the need for emergency obstetric and neonatal care. Less than half the population can get to healthcare within 15 km and there is a huge lack of trained health workers. This means that if a woman goes into labour and there are complications, such as infection, haemorrhage, hypertension, sepsis, the likelihood is that she won't be able to get to a hospital- even if she does, there probably won't be a trained midwife to give her the care she needs.


    We will provide materials and train the local health care providers on how to carry out a safe home birth. We will provide women with birthing kits and safe childbirth education.

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Sources of verification of goal indicators:

We are using data provided by the Nigeria Health Demographic survey 2016, UNICEF, Ministry of Health to determine the baseline data. Our goal is the reduced maternal and neonatal morbidity rate, we take our baseline data as 630 deaths per 100,000 live births. The health sector development plan targets to reduce maternal mortality to 320 by 2020 and the UN Strategic Development Goal target is less than 70 per 1000 births in 2030.

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Empowerment principle - we involve local experts and leaders of the society's representatives in project activities.

Activity 1: Assessment, selection of beneficiaries, launch of the project

  • DESK RESEARCH: assessment, defining beneficiaries' problems, determining the number of project participants

  • Field visits in Nigeria, meeting with beneficiaries, identification of target groups


Activity 2: Signing contracts and launching the project management team

  • Signing contracts with staff involved in the implementation of the project

  • Signing a partnership agreement between Wheels of Hope Rising Foundation and YORGHAS Foundation with the purpose of the partnership, obligations of the parties to the contract, financial plan, financial management principles, communication, and information flow rules, decision-making rules, partner's liability for improper performance of the partnership agreement.

Activity 3: Purchase and preparation of products necessary for the project, shipping goods to Nigeria

  • Comparison of prices and quality of delivery kits available on the market and sending inquiries to producers

  • Choosing the best offer (keeping in mind the value for money principle) and placing an official order with the producer

  • Preparing the goods for shipment


Activity 4: Distribution of delivery kits among beneficiaries

  • Payment of the duty and collection of the goods

  • Signing the contract with the midwife responsible for training

  • Notifying beneficiaries and local media about the start of the next project phase

  • Distribution of Mama Kits among 2000 pregnant mothers.

  • Distribution of Mama Kits will take place around health centers. At this stage, we will start completing the list of training

      participants and forms of delivery and distribution of products.

Our local experts during the training will focus on the following issues:

  • Protection of umbilical cord stump and newborn care,

  • Prevention of life-threatening newborns and mothers from infections, postpartum bleeding,
    contact skin to the skin, breastfeeding to increase the survival of newborns,
    refutation of cultural prejudices that have a negative impact on the course of pregnancy and childbirth, - prevention of gestational diabetes, water treatment to prevent diarrhea of children.

Representatives of the local community will not only use the knowledge they receive for their needs, but will also become multipliers - they will pass knowledge on.

Activity 5: Training of medical personnel

Increased qualifications of medical personnel

  • Midwife training is a key strategy for improving obstetrical care. According to UNFPA research in Nigeria, only 55% of midwives are unable to cope with postpartum bleeding, which is the main cause of maternal mortality. Current programs for nurses and midwives do not take into account emerging challenges. That is why our trainings are so important.

  • Medical trainings will be carried out on the basis of partnership and will serve as a mutual exchange of experience, thanks to which both sides will gain new knowledge and skills.

  • Purpose of the training - preparing midwives for professional care. Qualified medical personnel and maternal education may reduce the mortality rate among mothers and newborns. During the trainings we will follow the guidelines and recommendations on pregnancy and childbirth developed by the World Health Organization, UNICEF and UNFPA.

  • Distribution of 200 Midwife Delivery Kits for midwives (Midwife Backpacks) allowing safe delivery of at least 2000

    newborns for 2000 mothers.


Training will cover the following issues:

  • principles of good care in childbirth

  • antenatal care

  • childbirth-labour, delivery and postpartum care

  • postpartum care

  • preventive measures and additional treatment for women

Project Stakeholders

1. Wheels of Hope Rising Foundation : Leader of the project


Wheels of Hope Rising Foundation is the Nigerian, non-governmental, non-social, non-economical, non-political and

non-profitable, humanitarian relief and development organization, dedicated to working with children, families, and communities to give hope to the hopeless and aiming at impacting on every facet of human endeavors. Yet under this condition majority of our women and children live as if these scientific developments are a fairy tale. Poverty and diseases define the potentials of our people. Wheels of Hope Rising Foundation serve all people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, or gender.

2. YORGHAS Foundation: Partner

YORGHAS Foundation is a Polish non-governmental organization saving pregnant women, mothers, and newborns from deaths caused by poverty, lack of hygiene, access to proper healthcare, or education in Africa. The Foundation has already implemented projects in Uganda, Nigeria, and Tanzania, providing safe births for over 5,000 mothers and their newborns. Neonatology Clinic of the Medical University of Warsaw took patronage over the activities of the YORGHAS Foundation and plans joint projects aiming at improving perinatal care and reducing infant and maternal mortality rates in developing countries.

3. Primary Health Service Commission (Oyo State, Ogun State, Nigeria): Technical, Policy and Facilitate

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Hygienic behaviors during childbirth and during the early postnatal period are variably defined. In this project, we propose a solution that helps to create a clean birth and postnatal care practices in accordance with World Health Organisation’s (WHO) “six cleans” - hand washing of birth attendant before birth, clean birth surface, clean perineum, cutting of the umbilical cord using a clean implement, clean cord tie, and a clean cloth for drying. These practices may significantly reduce maternal and neonatal mortality.

Many delivery sets available on the market contain non-sterile components. Usage of the proper, medical, sterile tools during labor is a factor of the utmost importance. The same refers to the cord tie: Tying the umbilical cord with an unhygienic and non-sterile item is one of the main reasons for infections. Unfortunately, these infections are among the leading causes of neonatal mortality. That is why it is so important to use sets containing medical cord clamps designed for the proper clamping of the umbilical cord of infants just after birth. It is a safe, hygienic, disposable, and sterile device!


Mama Kit contains all the tools needed to provide a clean and safe delivery. It allows women to give birth in a hospital, clinic or at home. Mama Kit can greatly prevent risk of infection during labor and reduce the number of women and babies deaths that can

occur during childbirth.


  • 2x umbilical cord clamp

  • 2x gauze

  • 2x pair of surgical gloves

  • Medical drape

  • Disposable preparation drape

  • Soap

  • Sterile surgical blade


Midwife Backpack is a basic, inexpensive, simple kit designed to help to create a clean birthing environment, particularly for home births. The Midwife Backpack is intended to be used by midwives, skilled birth attendants, family members, etc.
Midwife delivery kit has a significant impact on reducing rates of infection, straightening efforts of the local health care providers, reducing morbidity and mortality among children and mothers from underserved populations in a normal and natural village

setting. Newborns of mothers who used the Midwife Backpack were about 13 times less likely to develop cord infection than infants whose mothers did not use it. By making kits available to women in labor we provide them with clean, hygienic, and safe lifesaving supplies they need.

Each backpack kit allows to protect a minimum 10 childbirths.



  • 10x disposable surgical blades

  • 1 neonatal stethoscope PINARD

  • 1 adhesive plaster

  • 10 x disposable drapes

  • 20 x disposable umbilical cord clamp

  • 10 x sterile gauze dressing

  • 20 x pair of sterile surgical gloves

  • Water purification tablets with water bag