Year 11s Assemble Safe Birthing Kits for women in developing countries

21 May 2015 | General Interest

Zonta

This week our Year 11 students participated in a community service assembling safe birthing kits. The kits were provided by the Birthing Kit Foundation Australia in conjunction with the Zonta Club of Melton.

 The Birthing Kit Foundation (Australia) is an organisation dedicated to improving conditions for women who give birth at home in developing countries.The idea for the Birthing Kit Project originated in 1995 when a member of the Zonta Club of the Adelaide Hills heard how these small kits can save a life.

Birth kits

In 1999 the club turned an idea into a reality by organising the first assembly day, making the first 100 kits which were sent to PNG. Feedback from PNG was extremely positive with the noticeable reduction in mother and baby deaths. This motivated the Adelaide Hills Club members to expand the project.

birth kits

The majority of the birthing kits are made here in Australia. The Zonta Club of Melton is a very  proud supporter of the birthing kits and over 8 years have assembled approximately 5000 kits, with the help of secondary schools like Thomas Carr College, who give their time to  raise funds and organise an assembly day. This entails putting together six components of the birthing kit into press seal bags, that are then distributed to women in third world countries such as PNG, Cameroon, Congo, Nigeria, Somalia, Kenya and India.

What are birthing kits?
The birthing kit addresses the 7 cleans needed for a safe delivery.
The kits are basic with 6 items. A plastic sheet, soap, 2 gloves, sterile scalpel blade, 3 cords and 5 gauze squares. These items are assembled into a small bag at an Assembly Day.

  • A plastic sheet - For the mother to lie on preventing mother and baby coming into contact with the floor or ground
  • Gauze - To wipe secretions from the babies eyes and the mother's perineum
  • Cord - For clean ties for the umbilical cord and to prevent bleeding from the umbilical cord for mother and baby
  • Gloves -For Clean hands to prevent birth attendant transmitting germs to mother and baby
  • Scalpel Blade -For a clean cut of the umbilical cord
  • Soap -For clean hands, to prevent the birth attendant transmitting germs to mother and baby and for washing and drying the stumps prevents infection

Our Year 11 students put together 200 kits - a fine afternoon's work.