During ROAM’s recent expedition to Tanzania, we joined up with Greater Hope for a Vibrant world- an NGO that focuses on new mothers to prepare them for childbirth and postpartum. Typically, women from surrounding villages outside of Arusha, Tanzania, come to an 80-year old midwife who has nothing to use for delivery except for an old, used razor blade. Often, these women give birth atop old foam pads (or the ground) that have been used in prior childbirths, though never cleaned or sanitized. The conditions are quite dire, and many women and/or babies die in scenarios that are often solved by simple solutions.
ROAM brought these expectant mothers various kits (hygiene and delivery, newborn, and postpartum) which will empower and enable them to have a safer and healthier, more promising experience of childbirth and infant-rearing. We also provided education and training on how to use all the items given, what to expect during pregnancy, delivery, and the postpartum process. The elderly midwife now also has all the tools and supplies needed to give these women much better care.
One of our expedition participants, Crystal Miller- a certified nurse midwife and WHNP-had raised money via Go Fund Me to purchase a hospital delivery bed for this region so that women there can deliver comfortably and cleanly. Her knowledge of proper and clean birthing processes was an absolute success with all these mothers. In addition to providing supplies, gear, and a lot of training and education, ROAM also delivered some 1400 lbs. of food to these expectant mothers which will give each at least two weeks-worth of reliable sustenance.
Our day here ended with a goat ceremony-a gesture of great gratitude- in which the locals presented us with a real-live goat that they slaughtered and served right up to us! Justin, my husband and co-founder of ROAM, was presented with the esteemed and honored task of drinking goat’s blood (he choked it down just fine). I (Lindsay here, speaking), was presented with the intestines of the goat and given the honor of squeezing everything out, all with very eager Maasai tribal eyes on us. To say it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience would be an understatement; we love these incredibly resilient and dynamic Maasai people!