Human Rights

Mother’s Day: Worldwide Challenges in Health and Security

 

Article Highlights

 
Dozens of children are now dropped off at a daycare center in Rwanda, rather than being left alone at the border. At the center, they eat, drink and play in safety. Janviere Uwimana, GPJ Rwanda
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A compilation of stories from around the world about mothers and motherhood.

GLOBAL PRESS HQ — Around the world, pregnant women and mothers often face challenges to their health and security from their countries’ laws and cultural practices. Whatever the differences across countries, GPJ reporting shows that women’s health and security are inextricable from those of their children and of their larger communities. For Mother’s Day, the following stories explore the dynamics of motherhood in various countries and explore what those dynamics tell us about the changing cultures and norms of their societies.

 

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Illustration by Zoe van Dijk

Uganda Takes Aim at Alcohol Advertising to Stop Women From Drinking While Pregnant

Women get plenty of messages from the alcoholic-beverage industry promoting consumption. But most women aren’t getting the message that they shouldn’t drink while pregnant.

 

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Janviere Uwimana, GPJ Rwanda

Alone at the Border No More: New Day Care Centers Watch Over Children of Rwandan Traders

More than 45,000 people cross the border from Rwanda into DRC every day, and female traders represent most of that traffic. To sell their goods, these women have often had to leave their children alone at the border.

 

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Anne Myriam Bolivar, GPJ Haiti

Without Easy Access to Basic Health Care, Many Haitians Rely on Unpaid Midwives

Few Haitians have access to formal health clinics where they can receive basic gynecological care, let alone give birth to children. Traditional midwives attend most births in the country, even when the women giving birth can’t afford to pay the midwives.

 

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Raihana Maqbool, GPJ Indian-administered Kashmir

Lack of Awareness and Nutrients to Blame for Kashmir’s High Rates of Anemia

The high rates of anemia among pregnant women in Kashmir frequently lead to serious complications during pregnancy and childbirth, and hospitals are ill-equipped to respond. But doctors say one solution is simple: more education on prenatal nutrition.

 

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Prudence Phiri, GPJ Zambia

Zambia Promotes Breastfeeding With Plan for Tougher Ban on Substitutes

The Zambian government, moving to improve infant health, is proposing to broaden the current ban on formula and other breast-milk substitutes to include certain baby foods. Penalties for advertising such products would also be toughened.

 

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Adriana Alcázar González, GPJ Mexico

Mexican Shelter Supports Young Mothers, Indigenous Culture Rejects Them

Many of the pregnant girls and women who seek help at a community home in Chiapas are indigenous and have been ostracized by their families. At the home, the women can improve their economic and social prospects with classes in childbirth preparation and with workshops on vocational skills.