David is now moving through several rural villages in Nepal to witness the singing competition program that University of Newcastle health researcher, Binod Sharma, has set up to try to improve community knowledge concerning the key health messages needed to improve maternal mortality in rural Nepal and to try to increase the number of women accessing health care prenatally and at the time of delivery.
Lack of awareness about the importance of antenatal care and skilled delivery is one of the principal causes of maternal death in rural Nepal. The deficiency of health care systems and an unsupportive sociocultural environment combine to create poor outcomes in maternal care for pregnant women in Nepal.
Singing is a prominent feature of everyday rural life in Nepal. The aim of this program has been to engage each of the communities and especially the school students in developing health messages using traditional songs to transmit knowledge through the community and change attitudes surrounding pregnancy to improve maternal outcomes.
Importantly, this research will develop an awareness program owned by the community. We expect that this program will lead to improved community knowledge concerning the key health messages needed to improve maternal mortality in rural Nepal and increase the number of women accessing health care prenatally and at the time of delivery.
The following photos have been taken from a video so are a little blurred but they will give you the essence of the thirteenth day of the singing intervention, a day enjoyed by David, Roger and Annie and the local people in the villages they visited. Of course, there was much hiking to do between villages, through the lovely but hilly countryside.
A walk, not for the faint hearted… and where there is down, there is also up!!!!!
This lady accompanied the visitors all day and danced to some of the songs. Note the young boys taking part in the background by clapping to the music. Hopefully these ‘motherhood’ messages in song will remain with these boys throughout their lives.
Roger, Annie and Binod happily joined in the spirit of the dances.
David had his turn, too!
In another village, young girls danced for the women of the village.
Annie really enjoyed her turn with the dancing at this village.
Some of the men got into the spirit of the dance in this village.
David’s camera was at work for most of the day, but we’ll have to wait for the outcome of that shoot. I’m sure it will be worth the wait!
And then, of course, at the end of the day, there was that walk back to the ‘home ‘village.
The full video should be able to be viewed if you click on the following link.
I this doesn’t work for you, go to Binod’s website and click on ‘updates’… its the video for Day thirteen.
There will be more anon.
David (and Jennie)
All photographs copyright © Binod Bindu Sharma
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