Ethiopia, Oromia region. These women walk slowly; from their village they need to reach a health center in order to be looked after. Often they are pregnant and Muslim, as nearly 50% of the Ethiopian population. They need medical assistance to avoid death by childbirth for themselves and their children.
They walk slowly but resolute. In these centers they find free and qualified medical assistance during the child delivery, obstetricians to talk to and most of all: access to Tuberculosis treatments, the possibility of a antiretroviral therapy if affected by HIV and screening for non contagious diseases. There is a staff of competent man and women waiting for them and ready to welcome them without the stigma that is often attached to a disease.
In order to modify a culture, even religious, that impacts mostly women, Addis Abeba’s government, with the help of the Global Fund has set up training programs and campaigns for women, inside their communities.
As a matter of fact Health education, especially the female one, is an incredibly delicate topic for a country in which 3 out of 4 women aged between 15 and 49 is subject to genital mutilation and where Aids strikes the hardest together with Malaria, which affect pregnant women mostly, due to their weaker immune system. In this way, the risk of infections intensifies and even the small amount of available water is not good enough to ease the suffering of body and mind.