Nations Magazine | Midwife to Refugees- #GivingTuesday
MIDWIFE TO REFUGEES
In recent years, between trips to our target ministry locations, I have acted as a doula (the word literally means ‘a birthing servant’) to expats and missionaries in my ministry country. But God changed this in the most unexpected way.
Just prior to the Covid pandemic, I became increasingly aware of the plight of the Rohingya refugees all around us. Numbers seemed to be on a steep increase in our area and I heard of the many difficulties they faced.
Life as a refugee is hard, but as a refugee giving birth – it is even harder!
Fear, emotional stress and financial pressures lead to reluctance to go to the local hospital, resulting in unassisted home births which, sadly, have ended in loss of life – of the infants especially. If the infants survived these unassisted births, there is the dilemma and struggle for a birth certificate for the child. It’s a truly sad situation.
My heart was burdened by this fate and I knew that God was calling me to use my life skill as a trained midwife/doula, to help these women and their families. This burden quickly turned into a vision, and soon, a ministry!
I began to build relationships with birthing families.
They soon trusted me to develop their understanding of healthy pregnancies, allowing me to take them through birth classes with other Rohingya ladies. They felt comfortable to allow me into their homes to support them through the many hours of labour – where they could do so, feeling safe, respected, comforted and cared for.
I am their ‘Auntie’ who ensures that they reach the hospital in time for a safe birth. To date I have served 60+ families in this way, and it is by God’s faithful provision, that I have been able to assist them, with my skills, with training, with baby provisions, and with 50% of their hospital bills. And the relationships remain even long after the births.
They have grown to trust me to look out for them and to advocate for their best interests. I believe that my deeds – and sometimes, when appropriate, my words, testify to the goodness and love of a GOOD GOD, who sees them, and cares about them! Simple kindness, and the help I give them, bears testimony to his love.
Even though they struggle to survive through Covid joblessness, financial difficulties, fear and no identity – ‘family’ remains their highest value. Often – it’s all they have. And in partnering with this value, I hope to introduce them to Father God and his family.
To read more about our focus for this GIVINGTUESDAY, head to our recent Nations Magazine, Issue 3 2021 – CLICK HERE