Hudson Institute researchers help to assemble 1000 birthing kits

Hudson Institute’s Ritchie Centre is world-renowned for its research aimed at improving the health and wellbeing of women and children, but many of its researchers go a little bit further in their work.

Hudson Institute PhD student, Aminath Azhan (Azu), has helped to lead a group of volunteers to assemble 1000 birthing kits in one day for the Birthing Kit Foundation, Australia, through the Rotary Club of Melbourne Park.

Hundreds of thousands of women die in childbirth every year, and 99 per cent are in developing countries.

Each of these kits has the potential to save two lives – that of a mother and her baby.

Ritchie Centre staff, including Sasha Odoi, Tim Moss, Hayley Dickinson, Kelsee Shepherd, Olivia Henry, Shreya Rana and Nadine Brew, offered a helping hand on the day.

“We had tasks assigned for the day and assembly stations, and there was great initiative,” Azu said.

The sterile birthing kit enables a hygienic birthing environment where otherwise a dirt floor and little to no medical equipment would be used.

The kits will be distributed in 1-2 months in Vietnam, Ethiopia, DR Congo and Papua New Guinea by the Birthing Kit Foundation, who liaises with the Australian Air Force to transport the kits.

Azu is the international head of service at the Rotary Club of Melbourne Park, which managed the day and was where the idea was spawned.

The birthing kits packed by Azu and others from The Ritchie Centre will provide much-needed materials to help give a safe birthing environment to mothers and their babies.

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