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Zimbabwe

With few physicians and even fewer gynecologists, Zimbabwe faces an enormous backlog of obstetric fistula patients.

Why We Work in Zimbabwe

In Zimbabwe, less than one half of births are registered, and only a third of Zimbabwean children have a birth certificate. According to our hospital partners, this indicates that many births are taking place outside of health facilities, and suggests maternal mortality and complication rates are much higher than what is reported.

Rural women bear the heaviest share of the suffering. There are few physicians and even fewer gynecologists in isolated areas, and community awareness about fistula is very low. With so few resources, Zimbabwean women will continue to develop fistula in childbirth— and the country already faces an enormous backlog of fistula patients. There is a tremendous need to build healthcare capacity and help Zimbabwean women who are suffering, many for years on end.

 

What You Help Us Do

We are investing in the following areas to build Zimbabwe’s in-country medical services and provide life-transforming surgery to as many women as possible:

Meet Our Partners

We are currently partnering with Women and Health Alliance International (WAHA) to deliver fistula treatment to women in Zimbabwe. In 2014, Women and Health Alliance International (WAHA) approached Fistula Foundation with a bold plan: they wanted to start Zimbabwe’s first fistula treatment program. The country faced a dire maternal health situation—Zimbabwean women had virtually no options for fistula treatment, and incidence was on the rise due to a severe lack of access to maternal care.

What projects are we currently funding?

WAHA’s work has been trailblazing. Today, WAHA’s program remains the only fistula treatment program in Zimbabwe, and they have established their own referral network through community-based organizations and forged agreements with local hospitals.

How much funding have we granted?

WAHA

  • $245,000 in FY2017
  • $245,250 in FY2016
  • $319,500 in FY2015
  • $134,800 in FY2014
  • $10,000 in FY2013

 

News from the Field

Meet Aneni from Zimbabwe  •  April 06, 2018
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When she was only 19 years old, Aneni experienced a wrenching, prolonged labor. She pushed for six days at her home in rural Zimbabwe, until her husband finally managed to...
When she was only 19 years old, Aneni experienced a wrenching, prolonged labor. She pushed for six days at her home in rural Zimbabwe, until her husband finally managed to borrow an ox-drawn carriage to take her to a nearby health clinic. There, doctors immediately recognized the severity of Aneni’s condition, and transferred her to the general hospital for an emergency C-section.
Meet Maria from Zimbabwe  •  August 05, 2015
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Maria learned about WAHA's fistula treatment program through outreach activities conducted in Zimbabwe. When she arrived at the hospital, staff asked her how long she had been living with fistula....
Maria learned about WAHA's fistula treatment program through outreach activities conducted in Zimbabwe. When she arrived at the hospital, staff asked her how long she had been living with fistula. She answered that she was unsure, but thought it had been over 22 years, which meant Maria had endure leaking urine and incontinence for more than half her life.
US-Based Fistula Foundation to Launch Zimbabwe Pilot Program  •  September 25, 2014
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An interview with Fistula Foundation CEO Kate Grant was featured on Voice of America Zimbabwe this week. The interview focuses on the physical and social consequences of obstetric fistula and...
An interview with Fistula Foundation CEO Kate Grant was featured on Voice of America Zimbabwe this week. The interview focuses on the physical and social consequences of obstetric fistula and a pilot program in Zimbabwe to help women suffering from fistula get the treatment they need. The Fistula Foundation, an American-based organization, which caters for women with birth complications, is set to launch an obstetric fistula treatment scheme in Zimbabwe, targeting women who find themselves ostracized by families and communities.

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