Obstetric Fistula Project

Photo by Sala Lewis

When Emwa Negussi was eight, she was married. By her 13th birthday, she was pregnant. Her labor lasted for eight days; but she had no money or way to reach the hospital.

Photo by Sala Lewis

“My baby died,” Emwa said, “and I suffered from fistula. My husband abandoned me and so did my mother.  I had nothing.” Then, Emwa met someone who would change her life.

Photo by Sala Lewis

A Pathfinder community health agent got Emwa the treatment she needed. “When I first heard that I was going to be healed, I was hopeful for the first time. After I had the operation, I felt so happy—like a new life had been given to me.” 

Through the generous support of an individual donor, Pathfinder provided access to treatment and rehabilitation to fistula clients in Ethiopia. Specifically, Pathfinder worked with community groups to identify women suffering from obstetric fistula, provide transport expenses to facilities that offer treatment, pay for diagnostic testing, and provide clothing and essential personal health items.

A favorable exchange rate, efficient programming, and an additional allotment of funds from the donor have allowed the project to reach significantly more women than originally planned. The project exceeded its targets, and reached more than 2,500 women in its lifetime.

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