...a Zulu word for motherhood and an arts-based project dedicated to bringing
mothers' stories of giving birth in the developing world into public view, to
honor the lives of mothers and to increase the commitment to saving the lives of
women dying in childbirth.
What it Means to be a Mother...
Every minute of every day, one woman dies needlessly from complications of
pregnancy or childbirth. Ten million women are lost in each generation from
complications that are treatable and preventable. Millions of their children
also die young as a result of losing their mothers.
Women face vastly different odds and circumstances depending on where they
live. In countries with the lowest maternal mortality rates, where women are
guaranteed quality health care and family planning services, fewer than 1 in
16,400 women will die from complications of pregnancy and childbirth. In
countries with the highest maternal mortality rates, mothers' lives are
threatened by inaccessible medical care, low social and economic status, poor
education, early marriage and lack of access to safe contraception. In
Afghanistan and Sierra Leone, 1 in 6 women
will die due to pregnancy or childbirth related complications.
A Global Commitment & A Local Call to
In the 21st century, Safe Motherhood is no longer only a health concern; it
is a moral, social and political objective. The urgency of saving the lives of
mothers has resulted in United Nations Milleneum Development Goal #5 which says
that the number of mothers dying in childbirth should be reduced by 75%
by 2015! But progress is painfully slow.
The UbuMama project is a citizen action campaign dedicated to addressing the
challenges of maternal health at both a local and global level. It enables local
community-based action essential to understanding the challenges and creating
solutions; it helps mobilize the global commitment and sustainable partnerships
between rich and poor countries necessary to ensure that every woman has access
to a safe pregnancy and delivery. UbuMama educates and empowers women at the
local level, enabling women to share and document their stories of giving birth
in a way which is beautiful, creative, awareness raising and incoming producing
for them. The birthing garments, which are the products of their labor, carry
their unique stories to raise awareness, support and political will for global
women’s health issues in countries where these issues are largely invisible.
Please join in this labor of love to make motherhood safe for all women. To
give life should never lead to preventable death and disability. Honor your
mother, honor the promise of life, by teaming up to save mothers' lives!