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LFAM Newsletter December 2020
Shipment of Misoprostol for Somaliland

The pandemic has very sadly had a significant impact on our ability to ship our medications to our partner countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, from Sierra Leone in the West to Somaliland in the East.

As flights do open up, lots of companies are fighting for cargo space. We have been fortunate to have International Health Partners managing our donations. They have been working long hours and literally begging airlines to take our medications.

Happily, we are very pleased to report that a shipment of just under 130,000 tablets of Misoprostol has just arrived at Hargeisa Airport, Somaliland. These will allow around 40,000 women to access this most precious of medications free of charge.

This is a photo of the Misoprostol being collected in Somaliland:

Cardiff has always had a strong relationship with Somaliland, with an 11,000 strong Somali community with whom LFAM has worked closely for many years.

This shipment has been partly sponsored by the Rotary Club of Cardiff Bay for which we sincerely thank them.

Background: Somaliland is a breakaway territory on the coast of the Gulf of Aden. 

Somaliland unilaterally declared independence after the overthrow of Somali military dictator Siad Barre in early 1991. It reinstated the borders of the former British protectorate the State of Somaliland, with Hargeisa as its capital city.

Though not internationally recognised, Somaliland has a working democratic political system, a president, government institutions, a police force and its own currency.

Skills Sharing by Zoom

Yet another casualty of the pandemic has been the visits by our UK midwives to our partner countries, to deliver our skills sharing workshops

Thanks to the hard work by local community, Africa has not been hit as hard by Covid as the West. Deaths are a fraction of those in Europe and the US. This has been attributed in part, to the lessons learned from Ebola. So the position now, is that unlike when Ebola was ravaging their countries, we cannot travel because of the risk of taking Covid to Sierra Leone and Liberia. So we had to think outside the box and use the latest IT resources to keep in touch and offer what can be shared over the airwaves.

LFAM has facilitated four Zoom meetings, two with Liberia and two with Sierra Leone. Each of the zoom meetings was attended by 20 midwives in Africa and a number of UK midwives from across the country, some of whom had been to Africa with LFAM so it was very much like a family reunion. Experiences and advice were exchanged and challenges addressed. All the meetings were very positive. 

The Zoom meetings will continue until LFAM teams are able to return, and given the arrival of the vaccine for frontline NHS staff, it is hoped that we can at least start thinking of when we can travel.

 Below are some images from our workshops:  

Send a birthday or seasonal greeting card and make a donation to LFAM
Donation Gift Cards

If you want to send a special best wishes to people, you could send a cheque donation to LFAM and we will send a gift card onto the intended recipient with your message inside. Or we can send the card back to you for you to give to them personally.

We have two designs, one for buying medicine to save a mother's life, and another for buying ambu bags that are used to save the lives of newborn babies.

1. Mother and Child Gift Card

Each 50p donated will buy medication to save a mother’s life.

2. Ambu bag gift card

Each £10 will buy an Ambu bag, used to save the life of a newborn baby.

You can choose whatever amount you want. Medication costs 50p per mother, so if you send a cheque to LFAM for say £20 and ask for that gift card, we will send the recipient a card saying that the gift has saved 40 mothers.

Similarly, Ambu bags cost £10, so if you send LFAM a cheque for £20 and select the Ambu bag card, the recipient will receive a card saying that the gift has allowed us to buy two Ambu bags.

We can also include a message of your choice.

Send your cheque, message, card choice (1.Mother and Child, 2.Ambu bag) and recipient's address:

Life for African Mothers
Big Yellow Self Storage Company Ltd
65 Penarth Rd
Cardiff CF10 5DL
United Kingdom

Seasonal Greetings Go Out To You All!
And please, Stay Safe! You Are All Precious!
Life For African Mothers

65 Penarth Road, Cardiff
United Kingdom

Newsletter edited by Angela Gilmour with contributions from Angela Gorman and our LFAM community.

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