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Mother of the nation :Running for the health of the people

18 Apr

Margaret Kenyatta is the only First Lady to have run the London Marathon.Talk about breaking records seems in Kenya it runs in the family. Forty two kilomefirstladytres of non-stop running is no walk in the park, but if it means more women holding their healthy babies in their hands after giving birth, it sure is a race worth taking to Mrs Kenyatta. Who herself is a mother of three and through her charity Beyond Zero aim to tackle the problem of maternal and infant death rates in Kenya.

Fifteen women die every day due to pregnancy related complications in Kenya and 20% of all deaths among mothers in the country are AIDS-related.In order to improve maternal and child health outcomes in the country, the First Lady of Kenya, Margaret Kenyatta launched the ‘Beyond Zero Campaign’ on 24 January in Kenya’s capital Nairobi. The new initiative also aims to accelerate the implementation of the national plan towards the elimination of new HIV infections among children.

According to the Commission on Information and Accountability for Women and Children’s Health 2013 Update Report, in 2012 alone, more than 100 000 children died before their fifth birthday—largely due to preventable causes. In the same year, 13 000 new HIV infections occurred among children and 62% of children living with HIV did not access life-saving antiretroviral drugs.

Donors and private organisations have already pledged funds to purchase mobile clinics that will provide integrated HIV maternal and child health outreach services in the country. Ultimately the programme aims to get 47 mobile clinics for mothers across  Kenya. Margaret Kenyatta is playing her role as mother of the nation to ensure that the future generation endures and grows to its full potential.


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