Saturday, March 19, 2011

Why Birthing Huts? Why Sierra Leone? Why CAUSE Canada?


We are committed to this cause!
Some think we should be committed to an institution!

In May 2011 “Old Guys” Bernie, Ross and Jon will bicycle over 500 KM on challenging dirt tracks crossing the West African country of Sierra Leone to help in changing a terrible statistic:

In Sierra Leone, 1 in 8 women die from complications associated with childbirth (1 in 11,000 in Canada).

Please help the Old Guys make a difference!


Training in Calgary at -30° to cycle in Sierra Leone at +30° has its challenges! On the plus side, some say I look better in a mask.  Thanks to Kory at Zoom Fitness the Old Guys now have a custom training program. With time growing short before we take off for Sierra Leone, we are tackling the program with increased urgency. Check our training program. That's the ideal. There are days when our training looks more like our music video. Why are we doing this? It is all about raising funds for birthing huts that will save lives of women in Sierra Leone. Will you help?

Why Birthing Huts?

Imagine giving birth or watching your wife give birth in an unsanitary environment with no trained staff. Now imagine a complication like uncontrolled bleeding or infection or seizure. No nearby clinic, no ambulance , no medicine…no hope. This scenario happens far too often in Sierra Leone where the rate of maternal mortality is the highest in the world.

“Birthing huts” is really short-hand for a comprehensive, ongoing program being managed by CAUSE Canada (CC). The program does include the physical birthing huts, but also includes equipment, medicine, training of birth attendants, nutrition and health education, pre- and post-natal care, and advocacy. The birthing hut program complements CC’s other programs in Sierra Leone. Together they are directed to addressing both the immediate and the underlying root causes of maternal mortality. What are the main causes of maternal mortality? See for yourself. Two pages, easy to read, hugely informative. http://www.scribd.com/full/50961848?access_key=key-476a3ezms8p4kwnkpyy

Why Sierra Leone?

I visited Sierra Leone with CC in 2008. A country still recovering from a decade long, violent civil war, I met upbeat, gentle people with a rich and resilient culture. The impacts of maternal mortality were clearly evident, like this woman I met. About my age, she is the grandmother. War and disease left her the sole caregiver, breast-feeding where there was clearly no milk.  At an age where she would normally be a revered, supported elder, she was deparately working to support this baby and other dependent children. In Sierra Leone, a small investment can make a world of difference.



Why CAUSE Canada?

CC has been in Sierra Leone for over 20 years and is one of very few organizations to continue operations through the devastating “Blood Diamonds” war. CC has inspirational, highly educated local staff and growing programs that are making a proven sustainable difference. And there are other surprising connections between CC and Old Guys. Click here to find out…and check out the hair!

CAUSE's Canada's Annual Spring Gala is being held at the Calgary Zoo on April 15. The speaker, Judge John Reily has just returned from CC project areas in Central America and will speak on the restorative power of women’s empowerment and education, something he has witnessed first‐hand over several decades of work with the Stoney people of Southern Alberta. Info, click here http://www.cause.ca/events/2011gala

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