Changemaker: Cartwright Siyumbwa Libanda
Country of Implementation: Zambia
Chichele is a large, low-income community in the Copperbelt Zambia with a population of 19000 people.
Despite efforts made in maternal health care, there is still a high number of pregnant women who are still not accessing these services due to many factors but mostly being lack of information on maternal health and archaic practices and this has led to the high prevalence of maternal mortality and congenital birth defects. Consequently, there is associated marginalization of children born with peculiar birth defects. To solve this problem, Cartwright with a dedicated and ambitious team believed that where there is a healthy pregnancy, there is a healthy birth, and there will consequently be a healthy child, they embarked on a project called Tikambe (let’s talk). This is because they realized that this community needed to be sensitized. They set their goals and objectives to sensitize the community, advocate for better maternal health policies, offer routine services, and also advocate for policies that demarginalize children born with congenital birth defects. To achieve these objectives Cartwright and the team will engage the community through its leaders to hold monthly community talks with women of reproductive age on maternal health and the importance of professional deliveries, distribute mosquito nets to pregnant women in homes, and also supplements for better health. They will further engage families of children born with defects for counseling to understand such defects and also donate toys and interact with these children to improve their quality of life.