International Women’s Day Birthing Kit Assembly

Around 300,000 women and 3 million newborns die each year from preventable causes related to pregnancy and childbirth. Most of these deaths occur in developing countries. To help address this, the Birthing Kit Foundation of Australia (BKFA) provides an opportunity for volunteers to fundraise for and engage in the assembly of Birthing Kits. Birthing Kits are a simple and effective tool for basic infection prevention and first-line childbirth care. The components are selected in line with global best practice and consist only of the essential items required to support the documented six principles of cleanliness at birth for mothers in high-risk and emergency settings.

Often the problems in our world seem insurmountable and confronting to our students and they feel powerless to change the status quo. At times this is reflected in the apathetic response many students present when they are offered the opportunity to contribute to appeals etc that the College runs. Under the umbrella of Social Justice at Padua College, we wanted to offer the students an experience of providing practical assistance to women and babies in the developing world who die at alarming numbers. The kit is a simple way that we can alert the students to the inequality, which exists today between nations such as ours and our near neighbours.
Today staff and student volunteers assembled 200 kits at the Mornington and Tyabb Campuses as part of our celebration of International Women’s Day. This added to the 1600 kits which were assembled by Year 12 students while on Retreat earlier this year. Everyone who has contributed to these assembly days comments on how wonderful it is to make such a profound difference in the lives of the women and babies who will receive these kits.

Thanks to everyone involved.

Bernadette Young
Social Justice Coordinator