Miriam looked nervously around the room. Fourteen other women sat around her, eager to hear what the speakers from Kyrgyzstan‘s capital city had to share. She and her fellow participants had travelled to this mountain village from surrounding towns, hoping to get more education so they could improve the lives of the women they worked with.
Miriam was a midwife, and the other women around her were also midwives or nurses in their own villages. Our partners in Kyrgyzstan were sponsoring the seminar, and three of our partners had flown to southern Kyrgyzstan, and then driven for four hours through the mountains to share with Miriam and the others about perinatal care.
The session began, and for the next five days they covered topics such as maternal nutrition, exercise, birthing positions, treating anemia and preventing and treating other complications. The information was much needed and Miriam soaked up every word. Before the seminar began, a pre-test revealed that the participants' knowledge of the subject averaged at 54%. Five days later, the post-test showed an improvement to 80%!
But that wasn’t the only goal of the seminar. The three staff workers assigned each of the participants to a coach. They were then given materials and taught how to share what they had learned with others.
Miriam was used to helping women in her village, but she had never considered teaching them everything she knew! Now she is being coached on how to teach 15 to 20 pregnant women about caring for themselves throughout the pregnancy and birthing process.
Our partners have been receiving messages and videos from Miriam and the others, describing how the teaching is progressing in each of the 15 villages!
Our partners will return to the village to give a second seminar on whichever topics Miriam and her fellow participants feel are most needed in their area. Coaching will continue until they all gather one last time for a celebration and receive certification for completing the coaching program. Our partners look forward to hearing the stories that will be shared and the impact each of these healthcare workers will have in their own communities!