Trade4Life is based in Sidcup (UK) and staffed by volunteers. Distribution costs are minimal and profits are used in our work with various organisations to promote Kangaroo Care and to improve Maternal and Child Healthcare in the developing world.
Fair Trade Manufacture
One of Trade4Life’s aims is to improve the lives of disadvantaged people in developing communities by creating ethical work opportunities. Our key product, the KangaWrap is Fairtrade certified and all of our other products are made in fair trade conditions where employees are well treated and paid a fair wage for their work. Workers are usually women with children of their own. Making KangaWrap products means they can not only provide for their children, their higher wage means they can spend time with them too as they need to work fewer hours.
ASHA – Delhi slums
Trade4Life profits fund maternity healthcare workers in Delhi’s slums on an ongoing basis. They have also helped to rebuild a healthcare centre. The work is carried out by Asha India, a charity founded by Dr Kiran Martin in 1988, which empowers and gives hope to Delhi’s slum dwellers, regardless of their background, caste or religious beliefs.
Around 450,000 people in over 50 slums benefit from Asha’s work. The statistics for the maternity healthcare training and visits that KangaWrap supports are better than for the India as a whole! In addition to this work, healthcare and sanitation in the slums have improved significantly since Asha started and children are being educated too; Asha has helped nearly 1,000 students to university from the slums, with plans for a further 5,000 before 2018; this concept was unheard of at the turn of the century.
Trade4Life has formed a partnership with Christian Aid to support, as it is able, their work that is focused on improving Maternal and Child healthcare. These are the projects we have supported to date:
Nurturing Change in Kenya
Kenya is classified as one of the world’s least developed countries by the UN. It has an unacceptably high maternal mortality rate, with 490 women dying in childbirth for every 100,000 births.
In Narok County, only 30% of the population has access to Maternal and Child Healthcare services and cultural
tradition means that only around 17% actually use them.
A programme combining service provision and education (including training over 1,000 community health workers) will improve health for nearly 200,000 women and over 130,000 children under five. In addition to meeting immediate needs, the project will work in communities to make lasting change.
In April 2016, we completed a contribution of £5,000, supplemented 3:1 by the EU, so £20,000 went to the project.
Read More: Narok County, Kenya (country information)
Read More: Nurturing change (project aims and objectives)
Read More: 400 Birth Attendants Retrained – Summer 2015 Update
Read More: More Skilled Deliveries – Winter 2015/16 update
Read More: £5000 Gift Certificate
Reproductive and sexual health for women and girls in El Salvador and Honduras
The sexual and reproductive health of women and girls in indigenous communities are hugely disadvantaged across El Salvador and Honduras.
There is a lack of appropriate health services available to them; many state health workers don’t share their cultural identity or their languages, the food available in state-run health centres is not acceptable to their diets, and traditional birth attendants are often prevented from being present. Because of this, indigenous women are much less likely to use health services, making the risk in childbirth so much higher; many more women from indigenous communities die in childbirth.
Family planning is culturally sensitive – and contraception is not always widely available; in El Salvador, 29% of all births are to mothers aged 10-19. The fact that STIs and HIV are stigmatised, means that testing services are rarely used; there is an urgent need for education.
The Christian Aid programme will train 150 traditional birth attendants across both countries; improve the referral systems for women with high risk pregnancies to reduce the maternal mortality rate, train 160 community health workers to visit and provide sexual and reproductive health education, and broadcast video and radio in indigenous languages to inform communities about HIV, STIs, underage pregnancy, family planning and gender-based violence.
By August 2018 we will have contributed £5,000, which the EU will match on a 3:1 ratio to send £20,000 to the project.