Hope for the Babies International

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$400.00 Pledged of $5,000.00 Goal
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All pledges will be collected automatically until October 9, 2016.
Funding EndsOctober 9, 2016

Our project’s goal is to reduce the mortality rate of both infants and their birth mothers. In many countries these rates are still high for several reasons: little prenatal or postpartum care, and low rates of skilled attendants at birth, and hypothermia. We help educate and motivate the mothers to seek help through the existing health care systems.

With $ 5,000 we will be able to provide 1000 newborn babies in Afghanistan with a warm hand-knitted sweater and hat set that will increase their chances of survival. 30 women knitters in Kabul will get salary to support their families for two months and participate in 4 health education sessions.

Our project addresses several issues that plague many poor countries; infant mortality and poverty. One of the reasons for the high infant mortality rate is that many of the births occur at home without a qualified assistance by a midwife or doctor. The difficulty is in convincing people to change behavior and getting mothers to go to a clinic. That is where the idea of giving out the knitted outfits to the babies comes in.

We pay local knitters, mostly in Afghanistan, to knit hats, sweaters and blankets for new born babies. These are then taken to a local clinic or hospital. Women who come to the clinic or hospital for prenatal care and to deliver their baby, receive the knitted clothing as a gift to keep their infants warm. In those clinics we have made wallboards with pictures of the new born babies in the sweaters and hats. This helps motivate the mothers to come to the clinic for delivery so that they can receive a similar outfit for their baby. Since 2011 close to 20 000 sweaters have been knitted and distributed to Afghan babies.

We have two types of knitters working for the program. We have the “solidarity knitters” from several different countries. They knit the outfits because they want to help. We also have, as mentioned, the local paid knitters. These knitters get paid for each item knitted and participate twice a month in health education sessions where they discuss health problems related to themselves or their families, and neighbors. With the money they earn from our project they are able to support their family because often the husband is either dead or handicapped due to the war. Currently there are plans to help the knitters to set up a cooperative and learn business skills to make the project sustainable and eventually not dependent on our support. Discussions are also underway to include this project in some government programs.

Campaign Owner:
Heli Bathija


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