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The Cause: Under the Baobab Tree

Walking to town in the mornings from their summer home on Lake Malawi, the Patel's were compelled to help the village children who sat attentively in the shadow of the Baobab Tree. They watched day after day as the children would return rain or shine to the shelter of the Baobab Tree. A single instructor would captivate an audience of 50 children with a single lesson taught from a single book. The privilege and pride that was displayed by the children Under The Baobab Tree inspired the Patel family to act. In 1997, construction began for the first Namaso Bay School. The school stands near that very baobab tree where the children sat and learned for so many years.

Ten years after the Patel's inaugural opening, we have created Under The Baobab Tree, Inc. a Nonprofit 501 (c) 3 to seek further reach into the global community We need your help to build a bigger, better school for the beautiful children of Malawi who are so intent on learning. We hope you are as inspired as we are to help us further enhance the school and community of Namaso Bay, Malawi Africa.

The Cause. One Mama

Jamira's Story

Jamira is a traditional birth assistant, otherwise known as a local midwife in Uganda. Since 1982, she has been working out of her hut in order to provide care for mothers giving birth. She has had training for midwife certification with a special focus on HIV prevention. She is also inherently gifted in her practice, using specialized herbal medicine for the women and babies who are under her care, and therefore has much respect throughout her community and other neighboring communities. Yet, Jamira does not have any medical supplies, funding, governmental support, or even beds for her patients. The conditions she works in are unfathomable by most.

Jamira represents many midwives in Uganda, and hundreds of thousands more around the world. Even with her extensive knowledge and understanding of midwifery, she struggles against strong odds: HIV, Malaria, extremely poor conditions, and little help. She is one of many courageous women in her day-to-day efforts to help women and infants who may otherwise succumb to sickness or death during childbirth because they lack access to family planning, prenatal and postnatal care, and financial stability.

Midwives are the heart of rural communities in Uganda. 90-95% of its women have their babies through a midwife. Women in late term pregnancy travel by foot for miles in order to give birth with a midwife they trust. At times, a single midwife nurtures the mothers and infants of an entire community- thus, quite literally being one mother for all: OneMama.

OneMama ties Uganda's communities together through sustainable health, family, and financial education in order for its people to overcome poverty and thrive. By specifically supporting the midwives at the center of these communities, OneMama empowers women, raises awareness, and makes positive change. OneMama is the nurturer, the protector, and the source of life for those in need.

We are all OneMama living on the one Mother Earth.

Day in the Life of a Midwife

Nearly 100% of Ugandan women have their babies with local midwives. Midwives are at the center of the birthing process in their respective communities. A Ugandan midwife like Jamira may have anywhere from 1-5 women come to her aid each day. Generally, midwives ask their clientele to bring either a birth kit or about $3.00-$5.00 to cover the kit's cost. The majority of clients do not have either of these for the midwife (the average Ugandan makes only $1.00-$2.00 a day). Instead, women often come hungry and in need of nourishment in order to have the energy to give birth properly. Midwives frequently feed clients from their own food supply, sacrificing personal sustenance. With such little income, many women have nothing but gratitude to give to their midwives.

Midwives use their own supplies (gloves, antiseptic cleaners, scissors, traditional herbs, medicine, bandages, testing equipment) when available. Yet, because many midwives do not receive payment for long periods of time, supplies are scarce. Midwives must persevere without supplies for the sake of their clients. To proceed without the necessary resources can be very precarious for the woman, infant, and midwife.

With no provisions, women and infants are at risk for infection. And, midwives are susceptible to any disease (such as Malaria or HIV) their clients may have. Lacking proper testing equipment, midwives must treat every woman and infant with extreme caution because so many of Uganda's people are infected with HIV or Malaria.

Midwives help women and infants overcome great adversity, and in doing so risk their own lives. Imagine working amidst such danger. Imagine living without the resources available to many of us today.

Do your part to support midwives, women, children, infants, and the men who love them. Support OneMama's mission to bring prosperity and health to people all over the world by empowering women as caregivers, mothers, businesswomen, and agents of change for their rural communities.

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