UNMISS peacekeepers from Bangladesh train midwives in Wau

unmiss bangladesh wau midwifery midwives maternal health south sudan united nations un peacekeeping trust-building

UNMISS peacekeepers from Bangladesh partnered with Wau Teaching Hospital to build skills of 25 midwives as a way to reduce maternal mortality rates. Photo by Michael Wondi/UNMISS

10 Dec 2021

UNMISS peacekeepers from Bangladesh train midwives in Wau

Michael Wondi

WAU – Midwives are an essential part of any South Sudanese woman’s birthing ritual. However, quite often many midwives do not have the necessary skill or training to handle complicated cases of childbirth.

Enter Bangladeshi peacekeepers serving with the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), who facilitated a three-day training for 25 midwives in partnership with Wau Training Hospital.

“While many trained midwives operate in Wau town, there is an urgent need for skilled midwives in rural areas,” reveals Dr William John, Acting Head of Obstetric Gynecology at Wau Teaching Hospital.

“This training by peacekeepers is therefore extremely welcome,” he adds.

For Bangladeshi medic Taffazula Tasnim the high maternal mortality rates in Wau is an indication that such skill-building is necessary.

“Wau Teaching Hospital is one of the major healthcare providers here and when we discussed maternal health and mortality rates, we discovered that many women suffer from complications while delivering their babies,” states Dr Tasnim.

“We felt that we could help by building skills among midwives and educating them on key interventions that they need to know for different kinds of issues that may arise when a woman is giving birth,” she adds.  

For registered midwife Elizabeth Kasto, medical knowledge needs to be constantly updated.

“Our profession is a continuous practice and we need to update our skills regularly; this training is very useful because it will enable us, in turn, to train others,” avers Elizabeth.

This activity was part of the UN Peacekeeping mission’s ongoing efforts to build trust and confidence among the communities they serve in the world’s youngest nation.