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Irrevocably connected to Australia and Australian midwives, and running on the proverbial smell of an oily rag, this low-resource Kenyan Birth Centre consistently shows remarkable outcomes. Here is its story

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      This is the vision of the Birth Centre, established in 2011 in an informal settlement on the outskirts of Nairobi in Kenya. Women served by the centre are of meagre means, often living without electricity, water, or toilet facilities, suffering food insecurity, severe anaemia, positive HIV status, or previous haemorrhage.
      Respect for cultural, emotional, and physical safety is the leading force, aiming for Women’s agency over their own lives and bodies
      • Companionship for the birth journey from women-folk and/or partners
      • Knowledge/faith in the wisdom of women’s bodies and their abilities
      • Kindness/compassion
      • Nutrition/hydration
      • Movement/positioning
      • Early recognition of variations from normal with resolution where possible and transfer to advanced facilites when appropriate and available.
      The Centre has no operating theatre, no advanced care for mothers or babies, and limited staff. Even so, in the ten years it has been running, these simple measures have led to
      • zero maternal deaths
      • no major maternal morbidity including catastrophic bleeds
      • low neonatal death rates – well below the national average
      • normal birth rate of 96% including twins, breech presentation, and vaginal birth after caesarean.
      The Birth Centre is a powerful example of how focused maternity care can positively impact not only the lives of women and their families, but an entire community. In this presentation I would like to share the story of the Centre: as an illustration of determination, grit, and commitment to better birth, as an example of innovative midwifery practice, and as a cost effective, successful model of care for remote/low resource centres around the world.
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