A TALK on what it's like to give birth in the most dangerous place in the world can be heard at Mapperton House near Beaminster on Friday, March 15.

Joanna Tom-Kargbo, an aid worker from Sierra Leone, will talk about delivering hope in her country.

The harsh reality of giving birth in Sierra Leone, West Africa, where ten women die from giving birth each day, will be brought to life when Christian Aid worker Joanna shares stories from the frontline of maternal health.

The country’s senior programme officer for health projects, Joanna, herself a trained nurse, will share how Christian Aid supporters are delivering hope to mothers and babies through a programme to make childbirth safer in the world’s most dangerous country to give birth.

Joanna is speaking at more than 20 events in a whirlwind tour of the south west to share with supporters how health clinics, health training and improved hygiene are saving lives in a country where one in nine children don’t live to see their fifth birthday and ten per cent of health workers were killed by Ebola.

The stories she shares will feature in this year’s Christian Aid Week which runs from May 12 to May 18.

Women are dying because of long distances to health centres, poor facilities, inadequate training for delivery assistants and lack of strength for mothers to give birth in the hungry season from May to September when many families survive on one meal a day.

Joanna said: “Communities in Sierra Leone see a woman dying in childbirth as the will of God. But we work so they know it is unacceptable.

“I am looking forward to meeting supporters in Dorset and across the south west to share with them how their contributions are making such a difference.

“It is inspiring for me to go out to rural communities and see how, as a result of Christian Aid support, villages are taking charge of the changes they need to see and showing other communities what can be done.

“Together we are rebuilding health centres and improving hygiene and medical training. So far 22 communities have built their own health facilities and together we are giving hope to all those expectant mums who have lived with such fear.”

Christian Aid regional coordinator for Dorset, Fiona Daborn said: “Christian Aid Week is an amazing celebration of our potential to change the world, through generosity, solidarity and action.

“Each year it’s inspiring to see supporters come together with Big Brekkies, sponsored walks, house to house collections, street collections and so much more. It will no doubt be both sobering and affirming to hear what Joanna has to say and will focus our minds as we look ahead to Christian Aid Week.

“It’s remarkable what we can achieve when we stand together. Do join us and come along to hear Joanna speak.”

For more details about the events contact fdaborn@christian-aid.org

*Christina Aid talk, Mapperton House, near Beaminster, Friday, March 15.