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Dear Friend,

While we celebrate and elevate midwives over the next decade, May is a special month to recognize the important role midwives play. Midwives stand with women at every stage of life, providing comprehensive reproductive health, counseling, and support services—and they save lives. Yet the 2021 State of the World’s Midwifery Report, launched earlier this month, flagged the immense shortage of 900,000 midwives globally. This is the reality in Niger State, where WRA Nigeria works intensively. Recently, we conducted an assessment that revealed only 64 midwives are currently employed by state government to attend to nearly 1.5 million women and girls of childbearing age. This is not acceptable.

Despite this, there is reason to be hopeful. WRA Nigeria, in partnership with the National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives, recently commemorated the International Day of the Midwife in Niger State. We shared that female providers and midwives was a top demand from the What Women Want campaign and demonstrated the new What Women Want Dashboard. We also disseminated our assessment findings on the insufficient number of midwives in the state. Upon hearing this, the Commissioner for Information, acting on behalf of the Deputy Governor, stated that the government will make a budgetary allocation in 2021 for more midwives to employed.

We’re using data and making progress, yet still have miles to go. Let us all continue to work together to accelerate the priorities and concerns of women and midwives everywhere!

Tariah Adams (left)
Communications & Advocacy Officer
White Ribbon Alliance Nigeria

Christy Asala (right)
Senior Program Manager
White Ribbon Alliance Nigeria


Headshot of White Ribbon Alliance Pakistan National Coordinator, Rafia Rauf.

State of the World’s Midwifery 2021

There is a critical shortage of midwives needed to meet sexual, reproductive, maternal, newborn, and adolescent health by 2030, as revealed by the new State of the World’s Midwifery 2021 Report. Launched by UNFPA, the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM), the World Health Organization (WHO) and Novametrics, the report provides an updated evidence base and detailed analysis of the midwifery workforce across the globe.

Read the report...

32nd ICM Virtual Triennial Congress

The world’s largest virtual gathering for midwives ever is fast approaching! At the Congress, WRA and ICM will unveil What Women Want: Midwives’ Voices, Midwives’ Demands, a key initiative kicking off the Decade of the Midwife campaign. Midwives’ Voices seeks to hear directly from midwives about their needs—to spark change locally and globally. If you’re a midwife, register to attend the Congress, and drop by the virtual conference hall to take the survey.  

Register to attend…

Decolonizing Global Health: WRA Nigeria Board Member, Dr. Adaeze Oreh, is calling on international donors to decolonize funding mechanisms and practices.

Urging Action on the Climate Crisis: WRA called on President Biden to address the climate crisis’ impact on maternal and infant health outcomes in an open letter alongside 60 organizations.

WRA Malawi and Partners Advocate for Midwifery Support: Calls for more and better supported midwives are growing in Malawi, as partners call for increased funding for midwifery services.

The Fight for Maternal Health Care for All – Sandra Mwarania: WRA Kenya’s Sandra Mwarania joined Dr. Zippy Okoth on an episode of the “Necklace Forum” to share her journey fighting for maternal health and rights in Kenya.

Donate to White Ribbon Alliance and join a global community empowering women and girls by supporting them to demand their rights to quality health care.
A What Women Want ad recently aired on television in Tanzania, ensuring women’s demands for water, sanitation and hygiene when seeking reproductive and maternal health services continue to be heard throughout the country.

Celebrating Midwives in Nigeria

Student midwives from the Minna School of Midwifery joined WRA Nigeria and partners to commemorate International Day of the Midwife, where they presented a short drama advocating for the employment of more midwives in Niger State.  

White Ribbon Alliance
1100 17th Street NW Suite 800, District of Columbia 20036

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