With more than 3 years experience, Sin Dany, a 29-year-old midwife from Thma Sar village in Cambodia, has delivered around 100 babies from her village. Every day is a challenge: she works with a small team in the Thma Sar Health Centre, located in a region with some of the worst maternal and newborn health indicators in the country.
As the main goal of the GSK–CARE Cambodia partnership is to contribute to the reduction of maternal and neonatal mortality through building health capacities and knowledge, for the last 3 years GSK and CARE Cambodia has trained more than 70 midwives about antenatal care, birth preparedness, danger signs and patients’ rights.
“When the training started, I was just a graduate, and I did not have any experience, so they taught me a lot,” Dany remembers. “After participating in those health sessions, I learnt and understood a lot more in addition to what I learnt from my teachers at the medical school.”
Now Sin feels more confident advising pregnant women encouraging them to deliver at the Health Centre. “Before most of the women delivered babies at home, but now they come to us since they have been made aware of the dangers and problems occurring during delivery.” Using the Most Significant Change (MSC) methodology, GSK and CARE Cambodia have promoted a participatory form of evaluation that enables use of stories by field staff and group assessments of those stories to judge which changes are most significant.
“Somehow, the number of women delivering at the Health Centre has gone up during the last year,” Dany says. “However those who live very far from the Centre say it is easier for them to deliver at home. That means we need to go there to educate them as much as possible. If we never train them, they will not trust us because they do not know who we are. Now I want to plan a monthly training to visit the most remote villages.”
These activities are part of Improvements in Health Service Delivery in Remote & Marginalised Communities which is funded by GlaxoSmithKline.