The Pledge Project is an interactive and participatory approach of bringing the topic of maternal mortality to the table for discussion.
Through this project, the general public will be challenged to pledge to actively participate in the reduction of maternal mortality either through raising awareness in their communities or household, offering their skills or service to the health sector and holding public officials and policymakers accountable.
Due to the increase in the number of maternal mortality cases reported in the scientific literature and on social media, health officials now face the brunt of the public’s continuous scrutiny which can have a lot of negative consequences for the public and health sector as a whole.
In this regard, the NMJFF has set up a team for this project, comprising of a multidisciplinary team of health professionals and individuals interested in the topic. Health professionals will help ensure that information shared during this campaign is ethically sound and accurate. Their expertise will also be leveraged to ensure that their voices are heard, safety tips shared and misconceptions about their field addressed professionally.
The Pledge Project will be a 10-day campaign commencing on the 15th of September. It will primarily be a social media campaign, the awareness-raising will be used in other NMJFF activities as an awareness-raising tool.
The activities will be as follows:”
1. Personal Pledges: A call for pledges will be made at the commencement of the campaign by requesting for 30-second video recording of individuals stating their commitment. Well-known personalities will be encouraged to participate as their voices and platform have a larger reach.
NMJFF will encourage pledges from diverse topics with the statement: “My name is___________________. I stand with the NMJFF on the maternal health awareness campaign, As a woman/A husband/A health care provider/Brother/Father etc. I pledge to_________________”
a. Maternal Wellness and safety
A pledge to embrace a healthy lifestyle, a regular wellness checkup, to support expecting mothers or as a health practitioner to educate more patients (take a 30min walk, improve my diet). They can also post a picture of this activity (if a video is unavailable) with a hashtag #Endingmaternaldeaths
b. Maternal Mental Health
A pledge to support women that are dealing with postpartum depression c. Maternal Reproductive Health A pledge to support women in making choices regarding contraception
2. Tips on reducing the risk of maternal mortality With support from the medical teams, NMJFF intends to collaborate with the Doctors and Nurses to share daily tips on how to stay safe and healthy from planning a pregnancy to delivery and post-delivery care. , FAQs, places to access more information and how communities can support pregnant women and more.
The tips shared will be recorded in an Audio and Video format, in multiple languages. These media files will be shared on social media sites including WhatsApp groups for a greater reach. The tips will cover the following topics and more:
a. General complications that exist during and after pregnancy and how to mitigate these. Some women die as a result of complications during and following pregnancy and childbirth, complications that are mostly preventable or treatable.
b. Knowledge on the major complication that accounts for nearly 75% of all maternal deaths: severe bleeding. c. Understanding what happens during childbirth: Infections, high blood pressure during pregnancy (pre-eclampsia and eclampsia).
d. How previous abortions can contribute to pregnancy complication.
e. Understanding the role of Men in maternal mortality.
This approach aims to get as many people as possible to send in videos and learn from the maternity tips shared by the medical teams. These videos will be posted on Facebook, Instagram and any other platform that we feel will help raise awareness. What we hope to achieve is to get more people to be aware of the issues and how they can be held accountable.
The NMJFF recognizes that numerous factors are affecting Maternal health in The Gambia, however, through this campaign, we aim to raise awareness and ensure that everybody recognizes that they are accountable to the health and safety of Mothers and their babies.