Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search


"Safe and Sound" Brings Maternal Health Into Focus

Click to enlarge

Family Planning International held their inaugural "Safe and Sound" concert last night, October 22, at the San Francisco Bathhouse in Wellington. Musicians united to raise awareness about maternal health in the Pacific.

"We've just started a campaign on (maternal health) this year," explains Joanna Spratt, Director of International Development at Family Planning International. "It's one of the areas, globally, that countries aren't doing so well on."

In the Pacific region Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Kiribati and the Federated States of Micronesia report high rates of maternal deaths. It is estimated that five women die every day from preventable birth related complications.

"It really is our neighbourhood," says Spratt. "The five women a day dying, everyone's just been blown away by that -- and the fact that no one knows about it. It's preventable as well, which adds insult to injury."

Though Family Planning International has worked to provide expectant mothers in the Pacific with access to pertinent prenatal and postnatal information, many countries still require more support.

Young mothers in various areas can be highly stigmatised, Spratt says, and may be afraid to seek out additional information or assistance from a Family Planning International clinic in their region. Distance and accessibility are also issues. A clinic with skilled birthing attendants and emergency services may seem an essential right to an expectant mother, but oftentimes such a facility is just beyond reach.

Family Planning International hopes to expand aid through the Pacific to areas that report high rates of maternal deaths. Proceeds from "Safe and Sound" will go to furthering this cause and raising awareness about maternal health throughout New Zealand.

"It's pretty shocking," said musician Iva Lamkum referring to the statistics about maternal deaths. "You don't really hear about (maternal deaths) in everyday life. I'm happy to help with this cause, and to help keep this from happening."

Click to enlarge
Concert participant Iva Lamkum

Click to enlarge
"Safe and Sound" concert participant Bella Kalolo

Lamkum performed Thursday evening along with fellow kiwi musicians Jess Chambers, Lisa Tomlins, Bella Kalolo, Tessa Rain and DJ Ayesha.

Lisa Tomlins is credited with helping co-ordinate the participation of many of the artists involved with "Safe and Sound".

"Lisa Tomlins has been pivotal." Spratt asserts. "She got in touch with other musicians and really inspired them to come on board."

A raffle at the event boasted numerous donated prizes from local retailers.

Concert attendees had the chance to win gift packages from Havana Coffeeworks, bags from Zowie Dee, vouchers from Trade Aid and Starfish Clothing, a Family Planning pleasure pack, as well as jewellery donated by Miss Fancy Pants.

"Everybody has just been so generous with their time and their resources." Says Spratt, who is encouraged by the outpouring of support in Wellington. Additional "Safe and Sound" concerts are a possibility, though no details have been released yet.

Spratt is confident that the pervasive nature of the issue will ignite the public's responsiveness.

"Everybody knows a mother -- your sister might be a mum, your friend might be a mum, you've got a mum," the issue of maternal health, she says, "Really touches everybody."

For more information about "Safe and Sound" and maternal health please visit Family Planning International at the following website:


© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Boris Johnson At Sea: Coronavirus Confusion In The UK

The tide has been turning against UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Oafishly, he has managed to convert that tide into a deluge of dissatisfaction assisted by the gravitational pull of singular incompetence. Much of this is due to such errors of ... More>>

Reese Erlich: Foreign Correspondent: Rightwing Populism Will Make You Sick—Really

The four countries with the most confirmed COVID-19 infections in the world are all led by rightwing populists: the US, India, Brazil, and Russia. Throw in the United Kingdom, which has the largest infection rate in Europe, and you have a common pattern. ... More>>

Dunne Speaks: Early Voting Is OK, If You Know Who To Vote For

Early voting is now open which is great for the 80% or so of the population whose vote does not change from one election to the next. They can go out and vote at their convenience without having to wait for election day. But for those who are yet even ... More>>

The Conversation: Biodiversity: Where The World Is Making Progress – And Where It’s Not

The future of biodiversity hangs in the balance. World leaders are gathering to review international targets and make new pledges for action to stem wildlife declines. Depending on whether you are a glass half-full or half-empty person, you’re likely ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On How The US Supreme Court Is Undermining American Democracy

If Joe Biden is elected President next week, here comes the bad news. If Biden tries to defend Obamacare, combat climate change (via say, a variant of the Green New Deal) or tries to improve the access of US women to abortion services , he will run afoul ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Trump’s Current Chances Of Re-Election

By now it seems clear that National have no fresh ideas to offer for how New Zealand could avoid the Covid-19 economic crisis. As in the past, National has set an arbitrary 30% ratio of government debt to GDP that it aims to achieve “in a decade or so,” ... More>>

The Coronavirus Republic: Three Million Infections And Rising

The United States is famed for doing things, not to scale, but off it. Size is the be-all and end-all, and the coronavirus is now doing its bit to assure that the country remains unrivalled in the charts of infection . In time, other unfortunates may well ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Altars Of Hypocrisy: George Floyd, Protest And Black Face

Be wary what you protest about. The modern moral constabulary are out, and they are assisted by their Silicon Valley friends in the Social Media club. Should you dare take a stand on anything, especially in a dramatic way, you will be found out ... More>>

  • PublicAddress
  • Pundit
  • Kiwiblog