Key Issues

More than 250,000 women and three million newborn babies die each year in pregnancy and childbirth or soon afterwards, the majority of them in Africa and South Asia.

This is an unnecessary and avoidable tragedy. In 2000, world leaders set ambitious goals to improve these shocking statistics. Women and Children First is supporting some of the most marginalised communities to achieve them.

The health and life prospects of mothers and their children are inextricably linked, and Women and Children First has demonstrated that most of these deaths could be prevented by low cost interventions that address the key issues affecting both maternal and newborn health. We have pioneered ways of developing women's groups that have been proven to have a dramatic impact on bringing down death rates and improving the health of mothers and children.

This section provides information about the task we face in tackling the huge, and largely unnecessary, toll of life, health and wellbeing for women and their newborn babies.

Facts & Figures

Between 250,000 and 343,000 women and three million newborn babies die each year in pregnancy and childbirth or soon afterwards, the majority of them in Africa and South Asia.

Women's Groups Explained

Women and Children First has developed ways of working with groups of women that reach the whole community and have a dramatic effect on saving lives.

The Millennium Development Goals

Outline of the goals agreed on by world leaders at a UN summit in 2000.

Pregnancy and Childbirth

Recognising the danger signs and obtaining care in the context of in-depth statistics.

Maternal Health & Maternal Mortality

Defining the terms and understanding the problems.

Continuum of Care

Continuous care is particularly significant for reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health.

Safe Motherhood

Safe motherhood means ensuring that all women receive the care they need to be safe and healthy throughout pregnancy and childbirth.

Infant Mortality & Newborn Health

Over 70% of infant deaths occur within the first year of life, many of them in the first 28 days. More than half of these babies would be alive today if they and their mothers had had access to simple, affordable interventions to ensure safe childbirth and newborn care.

Reproductive Health and Family Planning

Reproductive health, means that people are able to have a responsible, satisfying and safe sex life, the capability to reproduce and the freedom to decide if and when to have children.

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This Mother's Day - please help us cherish another mother

Last year, with your help, we saved 5,000 mothers and their babies.

Please help us do the same again this year by joining our Cherish Another Mother campaign.

Make a donation in the name of the mother in your life who you cherish and send her one of our Mother's Day cards to share what you've done. Read more.