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Edition 6, June 2015

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Welcome to our new-look quarterly newsletter. We hope that this will improve the way we share information with you, our supporters. We welcome your feedback.
Here you can read about the most recent trips to PNG as well as events and trips to come.

The Latest in PNG

Recent Trip to PNG
 

2015 has been a very busy one indeed.  Living Child undertook a trip to PNG from 29 March to 14 April.  Midwives from Australia, Mary Richards and Debbie Butters joined local midwife Rhondy Ktumusi for 2 weeks of training in Anguganak, Sandaun Province. Sara David then met up with Rhondy and Mary Richards in Wewak and spent a week in the East Sepik Region delivering more training in safe motherhood to village birth attendants and health workers.

The first week in Anguganak focused on safe motherhood awareness training for village health volunteers. 64 attendees came along from a variety of villages around the area. Family planning awareness, danger signs in pregnancy, safe clean birth, birth planning, essential newborn care and emergency care for a mother bleeding after birth were the topics.


The second week was more intensive training for Community Health Workers (CHW). Three CHW were also certified to insert contraceptive implants, of which 85 were inserted. To date 300 implants have been inserted - the need is great. Thank you to the Rotary project Spacim Pikinini for providing the implants. Topics covered were family planning counselling, quality antenatal care, kind care during labour and birth, managing labour, helping babies breathe, emergency care. The majority of the 32 CHW had not had any continuing professional development since they had qualified. This is a huge problem in remote areas of PNG.
 

Overall the 2 weeks in Anguganak were very successful - the team worked well together, the first time without Founder and CEO Sara David! Rhondy was a vital link to connecting with the community and her experience was highly valued. The local people were very grateful for the training and asked for Living Child to return in the near future. 
 

For more information about the rest of the trip see:
http://www.livingchildinc.com/blog

Sara David donating teaching resources and fetal doppler to midwives in antenatal clinic at Wewak Hospital

A trip to Angugunak 
 

Written by Debbie Butters (Midwife)

Another productive PNG trip with Living Child Inc. It is amazing watching and participating in the progress of this young N.G.O. Just as a living child should, it grows in strength and confidence. This was our first expedition without Sara at the helm and it was encouraging having women, health workers, health authorities and the leaders of the community all responded to our visit and training with such enthusiasm and appreciation.

Training such eager students is a privilege. My favourite photo shows Carol, a housewife and mother from the tiny village of Brugap just soaking up the training with such tangible enthusiasm. The women thrived on the opportunity to learn new skills and this empowered them with knowledge that could save lives. As trainers we desired to try and prove this in some measurable way.

Mary, Rhondy and I sat up late at night after busy long days, writing evaluation forms and correlating the results sometimes with only the light of torches. Aiming to provide a written report and assessment of the training and the new course that Sara had developed, and yet the best proof may have come from Carol.

Running towards me a few days after completing the Safe Motherhood Course, Carol announced with great excitement that she had brought the patient that we had just seen arriving on the back of a ute. Carol shared that she had met the sick woman in her village and realised she needed care at the health centre. She organised and escorted the woman to Angugunak where a diagnosis of severe kidney infection was established and promptly intravenous fluids and antibiotics were commenced. We praised Carol for her correct and efficient decision making, empowered from the new knowledge and confidence that the course had provided.

Carol also informed us that other women from the training were feeling bold enough to make announcements on the public transport about the new family planning option Implants that we had made available at Anguganak. Three health workers had been trained by Rhondy and I in how to insert the tiny hormone rods into women’s upper arms providing the option of 5 years birth control. Ultimately this will save mothers lives as childbirth becomes more dangerous when a woman has more than 4 children. In less than a month 280 implants have been inserted and I am told more women are coming every day. When my trainees have in such a short time far exceeded my number of implant insertions, I again feel validated that our visit to Anguganak was a great success.
 

Sea Container Arrives
 

The sea container that we jointly donated with West Perth Rotary, finally arrived in Wewak at the end of May. Samaritan Aviation has been at the forefront of receiving the container, arranging a media release and official opening with Provincial Health personnel present, and then distributing the goods in a fair manner. Last week a meeting was held of all health representatives where they were given the opportunity to request specific donations. We are very thankful to Samaritan Aviation for their amazing support and assistance.
 
A post from Rhondy (LC Midwife based in PNG): [Here's a photo of us] Unlocking the container that contains a lot of medical stuff from Western Australia through the organization of LivingChild Inc (Sara David), St Johns Ambulance and donors like midwives, church families, relatives and friends of Sara etc that are not mentioned but God has seen your contribution. Thank you for your blessing that has been shared as God will still continue to bless you. Most of the stuff are needed here and may God daily bless you with wisdom to decide more ideas to assist. Love Rhondy and family LC PNG.

We are planning a trip to PNG in September. Melanesian Churches of Christ have asked us to travel to the very remote area of Sogeram River which borders East Sepik Province and Madang Province. The villages in this area have no health facilities and have asked for family planning, as well as training about safe motherhood. We will then travel up to Wewak to have meetings with the Provincial Health Authority who would like to sign a memorandum of understanding to partner with the government in giving safe motherhood training and family planning. Then we'll go out to the remote village of Bunam to give 5 days of training.
We are currently preparing some survey forms to be able to properly assess and evaluate our training program. Send Hope Not Flowers has given verbal approval to fund this trip.

Fundraising and Support

A very successful fundraising event, An Evening with Maggie Dent, was held at Riverton Baptist Community Church on 2nd June. We'd like to thank Jenn Smith and her team: Yvette Cherry, Kate Slater, Nathan Smith, Christie, Naomi, Jan and LC Board members and Pastor Mike Bullard and his wife Rhonda who were parking attendants on a very wintery evening. Many people contributed to the success of this event including businesses and other donors of raffle prizes.

Maggie spoke for 2 hours about developing resilience in children. She was engaging and gave common sense inspiration about parenting. $8000 was raised through ticket sales and a fantastic raffle on the night. There was also some great publicity generated for the work of Living Child when an article appeared in the local community newspaper. THANK YOU!!


Our partnership with Spacim Pikininini has seen over 1500 contraceptive implants inserted in Wewak and remote villages of East Sepic Province and Sandaun Province. During training in April, 3 health workers were certified to continue to insert the implants. They provided 300 implants in just 2 weeks. For every 125 implants inserted, 1 mothers life is saved.  Go to their Facebook page for more details.

Spacim Pikinini PNG
Spacim Pikinini PNG

Send Hope Not Flowers is a funding organisation specifically sponsoring projects that reduce the death rate of mothers in developing nations. They have been very supportive of Living Child, funding our trip last August. They have invited Sara David to give a presentation at a fundraising luncheon in Cairns in October 2015. They are also actively promoting the work of Living Child on their website, Instagram and Facebook social media sites. See www.sendhope.org

Birthing Kits

Sara has given a number of presentations to women's groups who have also been involved in making birthing kits.

Upcoming Meeting

Our next AGM is scheduled for 31st October 2015. If you are not yet a member and would like to be more actively involved in Living child, then please contact our Administration Coordinator, Alicia Tearle at livingchildinc@gmail.com for a membership application form.  Membership costs $50 per year.

If you have some skills that you think may assist the Board, then please contact Sara David 0414 849 150.

Donate now - you can make a difference

Help us to provide long term strategies to assist the mothers in PNG and prevent deaths of mothers and babies in the future.

Please deposit funds directly into the account below and CONTACT US to let us know. Receipts can only be issued on request. 

Commonwealth Bank of Australia
Account Name:     Living Child Inc.
BSB: 066 173       Account No:103 668 76


Or you can go to our website www.livingchildinc.com

Living Child Inc.
15 Marsh Way, Bull Creek WA 6149
livingchildinc@gmail.com

 
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