Mothers have the right to safe pregnancy.

A mother holds her baby in a health clinic in Africa.More than 160,000 women died in pregnancy or childbirth in Africa in 2010 alone. That's 56% of all maternal deaths worldwide.


A mother receives prenatal care.1 in 39 women in sub-Saharan Africa have a lifetime risk of dying in pregnancy or childbirth, compared to 1 in 5,200 in Canada.


A woman holds a baby.Over 80% of deaths of African mothers are a result of complications that could be treated in health care facilities with basic emergency care.


Amref Health Africa's Stand Up for African Mothers campaign aims to train 15,000 African midwives by 2015. Midwives save lives.

Prioritize Training and Deployment of Midwives, African Governments Urged

Published: 04 May 2015 Sean Power

On the occasion of the International Day of the Midwife 2015, Amref Health Africa calls for Governments in Africa and foreign aid departments of developed countries to increase investment in scaling up education and training of midwives to increase access to quality health services and reduce needless deaths of mothers and their newborn children. Read more

Water shortage and Trachoma - A double burden for women and children in Samburu, Kenya

Published: 20 March 2015 Sean Power

Every morning before sunrise, women and children in Kenya’s Samburu County embark on an arduous journey, one that takes them miles away from their homes in search of water. Read more

Let’s Make it Happen for African Women

Published: 06 March 2015 Sean Power

Amref Health Africa calls for elimination of sexual and gender-based violence as the world marks International Women’s Day. Read more

We mark 2015 International Women’s Day with the words and experiences of women who are at the forefront of creating lasting health change in Africa. Read more

The Maasai: Alternative Rituals to FGM

Published: 09 February 2015 Sean Power

Together with the Maasai in Magadi and Loitokitok, Kenya, Amref Health Africa has developed an Alternative Rite of Passage for girls to transition to womanhood. Read more

The International Day against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), also known as Female Genital Cutting, has been designated by the United Nations to raise awareness about the dangers of the practice. FGM is the intentional invasive injuring of the female genitalia for non-medical reasons. It has been recognized as a severe violation of the rights of women and girls. Read more

Amref Health Africa has partnered with Philips Healthcare to invigorate private/public sector cooperation. In this Fabric of Africa Viewpoint, you will hear from caregivers, patients, and organizers about current initiatives that exemplify the positive outlook for East Africa Read more

Give the Gifts of Health

Published: 09 December 2014 Sean Power

This holiday, through Amref Health Africa's symbolic Gifts of Health wish list, you can play a crucial role in helping to ensure that women and children in sub-Saharan Africa receive the life-saving gift of health they need this holiday season. Read more

As the 2015 deadline for the Millennium Development Goals approaches, countries are focusing their efforts on meeting the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). MDG 6 calls for global efforts to halt and begin to reverse HIV/AIDS. The world has made great progress towards the global vision of zero new infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths. Read more

Communiqué of the 1st Amref Health Africa International Conference, Safari Park Hotel Nairobi, November 24 – 26, 2014, Organized in Collaboration with the World Health Organization Theme: From Evidence to Action – Lasting Health Change in Africa Read more

Amref Health Africa International Health Conference

Published: 24 November 2014 Sean Power

Amref Health Africa is hosting its first international conference focused on improving health in Africa. The Conference, in partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO), will bring together government leaders, researchers, health professionals, community-based organizations, and local health leaders to explore the theme: From Evidence to Action: Lasting Health Change in Africa. Read more

As we observe World Prematurity Day 2014, it is a sobering reality that over one million children die each year due to complications of preterm birth. About 15 million babies are born prematurely every year - more than one in 10 of all babies born around the world. Read more

Through a programme funded by the Government of Canada through the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD), Amref Health Africa has been able to support Community Health Workers in Tanzania in carrying out their work. Read more

Ugandan Government Honours Midwife Esther Madudu

Published: 23 October 2014 Sean Power

Esther Madudu, the face of Amref Health Africa’s Stand Up for African Mothers campaign has been recognized by the Ugandan Ministry of Health for her exemplary performance and commitment to work as a midwife. Read more

Health care remains a huge concern for African states, indicating an urgent need for governments to prioritize access to quality health care, and for private players to partner with public institutions in advancing the continent’s health agenda. The current Ebola outbreak in West Africa demonstrates the weakness and vulnerability of African health systems and the underlying social and economic challenges. Read more

Amref Health Africa in South Sudan

Published: 29 July 2014 Sean Power

Amref Health Africa has a long history in South Sudan, beginning in 1972 in what was then the southern region of Sudan. Over the decades, we have played a critical part in planning and developing the country’s health care system. Read more

Canada is committing another $3.5 billion to improve global maternal, newborn and child health, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced today on the sidelines of the government's health summit in Toronto. Non-profit organizations, such as Amref Health Africa, have said it would be possible to achieve Millennium Development Goal No. 5 of reducing the maternal mortality rate by three-quarters (from 1990 to 2015) if the Muskoka Initiative was to be renewed with similar funding. Read more

Amref Health Africa (formerly the African Medical and Research Foundation) has received more than $15 million in federal government funding for two projects since 2011. One of its projects is to help rural communities in Tanzania access the formal health system by training nearly 4,000 volunteer health workers to go into communities to deliver services, along with creating a model to replicate those efforts in different regions. Read more

Saving Lives: Moms and babies in Tanzania

Published: 28 May 2014 Sean Power

Mothers and their children in the Simiyu region of northwestern Tanzania lack access to basic health care during pregnancy, delivery and the first few years of life. Focusing on five districts where mother and child deaths are high, Amref Health Africa in Tanzania is working to ensure quality health care is available to prevent unnecessary deaths. Read more

The Reality in South Sudan: Meet Nugent Manea Kalome

Published: 05 May 2014 Sean Power

Meet Nugent Manea Kalome, 56-year old midwife who was in the first group of midwives trained at Amref Health Africa’s National Training institute in South Sudan. Read more

Midwives Changing the World One Family at a Time

Published: 01 May 2014 Sean Power

On this International Day of the Midwife Amref Health Africa renews its commitment to work hand-in-hand with governments development partners and civil society organizations to train midwives. Read more

A Ray of Hope and Happiness

Published: 01 May 2014 Sean Power

Amref Health Africa is training midwives in rural Ethiopia to ensure more mothers and their babies have access to health care. Read more

Bye Bye Malaria!

Published: 21 April 2014 Sean Power

Christine Nasimiyu, a mother in Lurende Village, Bungoma County in Kenya describes how the community health worker in her village has helped her family prevent malaria. Read more

Dr. Brook Asfaw: Delivering Healthy Babies

Published: 11 April 2014 Sean Power

Dr. Brook Getahun Asfaw is the only obstetrician-gynecologist at Jinka Hospital in the South Omo region of southern Ethiopia. The hospital serves more than one million people. Read more

Clean Water and Maternal Health

Published: 21 March 2014 Sean Power

In Kenya, AMREF is partnering with communities to improve access to clean water and sanitation. Read more

Community Health Workers Save Lives

Published: 13 January 2014 Sean Power

Program to train community health workers helps create lasting health improvements. Read more

Better health for Moms and Babies in Ethiopia

Published: 13 January 2014 Sean Power

Improving access to health care in the remote South Omo region of Ethiopia. Read more

AMREF and SickKids Join Forces to Improve Health

Published: 08 January 2014 Sean Power

SickKids’ experts train health professionals in Tanzania to improve care for newborns. Read more

The Malawi Minister of Health, Catherine Gotani Hara, launched the Christian Hospitals Association of Malawi - African Medical and Research Foundation (CHAM - AMREF) "Staying Alive" maternal and neonatal health project. Read more


Published: 13 September 2013 Sean Power

Women throughout Africa continue to die in pregancy and childbirth at unacceptable rates. That's why Amref Health Africa has launched the Stand Up for African Mothers campaign, aimed at training 15 000 midwives by 2015. Read more

Maria Gasingo lives in South Sudan, and just like so many women in Sub-Saharan Africa had no other option but to give birth at home. She ran into severe hemorrhaging complications during labour and immediately knew that her life and the life of her unborn child were at risk. Read more

Helping Communities Tackle Malaria: Resty Nsamba

Published: 19 August 2013 Sean Power

Resty Nsamba says that she is 30 years old, but her experiences and level of respect in her community suggest that she is much older. Read more

Malaria Mother Co-ordinator: Hassena Foka

Published: 19 August 2013 Sean Power

"My name is Hassena Foka. I am 40-years-old and a mother of four boys and six girls. My family and I live in a small village called Yirgada in the Afar region of Ethiopia. The village is home to 300 pastoralist communities and has a health post and elementary school." Read more

Christine Akello, 28, is a qualified enrolled midwife working in a remote sub county of Lalogi, Uganda where the health centre she works in is located, about 145 km from Gulu Town in the north. Read more

The World Needs More Midwives

Published: 24 July 2013 Sean Power

A motherless baby begins life at a disadvantage. In addition to missing maternal love, the baby is at risk for malnourishment, infection and a host of other problems. My skills as a midwife are vital to saving the lives of mothers every day, but they also go beyond delivering babies. I help to educate women with proper healthcare information and campaign for maternal health to be prioritized. Read more

Alexina Bonareri waited patiently in the packed hallways of Western Kenya’s Kisii National Hospital. More than a decade had passed since she lost her baby and her dignity. Today’s simple surgery would repair her torn body and give her back a normal life after 14 years as a social outcast. Read more

AMREF and SickKids Join Forces for Child Health in Tanzania

Published: 07 February 2013 Sean Power

TORONTO – The African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) and The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) are joining together to combat the high mortality rate of children in rural Tanzania. Read more

The Policy Implications of Family Planning as a Human Right

Published: 16 January 2013 Sean Power

In late 2012, the United Nations Population Fund’s (UNFPA) State of the World Population report sparked controversy in a number of circles by re-affirming that family planning and access to contraceptives are not only human rights, but also policy tools to improve women’s reproductive and economic health. While critics claim... Read more

Rush-hour blitz of key TTC subway stations draws attention to the unacceptable death rate of African mothers. Torontonians are being asked to Stand Up for African Mothers on Friday, December 7 to help combat the unacceptably high rate of deaths among moms in Africa. Read more

World Water Day 2012

Published: 22 March 2012 Sean Power

Safe water and sanitation are essential for food security and improving child health. March 22 is World Water Day, a day established by the United Nations to look at water issues around the world. Read more

As the world marks the International Women’s Day 2012, AMREF would like to pay tribute to women all over the world, and in particular to African mothers. Over the years, women have made great progress in many fields, including business, academia, research, sports and political leadership. There are more girls in school and more women in salaried employment. Read more

Women's health in Africa a priority for AMREF

Published: 08 March 2012 Sean Power

Our water and sanitation programmes ensure that women do not spend long hours every day searching for water. Instead, they are able to use the time to take care of their families, and to engage in projects that boost the family’s income. Read more

Chase Bank Foundation has launched a partnership with the African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) aimed at saving the lives of thousands of women and children. This is the first of many initiatives to be undertaken by the Chase Bank Foundation, which was registered last October under the Trustees Act in line with one of Chase Bank’s core values of social responsibility to improve the lives of those around us. Read more

Community health worker Almaz Doiso is responsible for bringing health care closer to home for more than five hundred families in one of the most remote regions in the world – South Omo Ethiopia. She travels the rough terrain by foot. The weather is hot, the climate is dry and dusty and the infrastructure is weak. Access to formal health care is almost inexistent. There is one hospital serving half a million people and there are not nearly enough professionally trained staff. Read more

Toronto, July 25, 2011 - AMREF Canada applauds the Canadian government’s international leadership in providing $50 million to relief efforts while also matching all eligible donations made towards AMREF’s efforts supporting people suffering from the severe drought across the Horn of Africa. Read more

AMREF Spokespeople are available for comment on the devastating health implications the severe drought is having on communities across Kenya, beyond the Somali border region and Northern refugee camps, and the urgent need to implement measures that will result in long-lasting health results. Read more

The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed at AMREF Headquarters by Elhadj As Sy, UNICEF Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa, and AMREF’s Director General Dr Teguest Guerma. It spells out several areas of collaboration between the two organizations, including promotion of vaccination of children and women; training of health workers involved in management of maternal, newborn and childhood illnesses, elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV, and research to improve public health approaches. Read more

Sudan Independence: Hope for Freedom, Peace and Health

Published: 05 July 2011 Sean Power

On July 9, 2011 Southern Sudan will celebrate its Independence marking the end of a long journey in search of freedom, autonomy and self-rule. It is a journey that has been fraught with numerous challenges and setbacks. Read more

Shifting Tasks to Save Lives in Southern Sudan

Published: 01 June 2011 Sean Power

Southern Sudan emerged from two decades of civil war in 2005 to find its health system in tatters. The country’s health indicators are some of the worst in the world. Maternal mortality is estimated at 1 in every 50 live births and 1 in every 4 children will die before reaching their fifth birthday. Read more

The statistics are grinding. One in six people on this planet with HIV/AIDS lives in South Africa. Not washing hands before eating kills more kids in Africa than starvation. There is one doctor for every 400 people in Canada – in Africa, it’s one for every 20,000. Read more

Consult Thembi Nxumalo on diabetes treatment and she will likely recommend a mix of natto root and caju bark. Show up with an ulcer and you will be given balsam pear tonic. Read more

Investing Donor Dollars in Africa: What Works

Published: 06 April 2011 Sean Power

Director General Dr. Teguest Guerma, MD and infectious disease expert of East African based, African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF), will be in Ottawa available to speak with media on World Health Day (April 7, 2011). She will also be in Montreal on Monday, April 11 and Toronto on Tuesday and Wednesday, April 12 and 13. Read more

AMREF calls on Africans to curb maternal deaths

Published: 16 March 2011 Sean Power

AMREF's Director General Dr. Teguest Guerma recently spoke to Kenya's Capital FM Radio about AMREF's call people living in East Africa to help curb maternal deaths through a new corporate partnership with Nakumatt, one of East Africa's largest department store chains. Read more

Reaching Mothers in South Omo: Meet Almaz

Published: 04 March 2011 Sean Power

Almaz Nagadi greets Amira in her small village with a big smile and warm handshake. Amira is pregnant and will be delivering her baby soon. “I lost my first baby,” Amira explains. “But I’ve learned many lessons from Almaz and this time I want to have a safe delivery at the health post.” Read more

First Lady of the United Republic of Tanzania, Salma Kikwete officially launched a four year project that will work to reduce maternal, newborn and child mortality in Mtwara and Tandahimba districts Tanzania during the White Ribbon Day Celebrations held in March. Read more

Traditional birth attendants have been a subject of discussion in the provision of maternal and newborn health care, especially in developing countries where there is a lack of infrastructure and trained health personnel. The objective of this study was to assess the role of trained traditional birth attendants in maternal and newborn health care in Afar Regional State. Read more

Contact Us - Programmes

Kevin O'Neill
Director of Programmes

Kevin O'NeillWant to partner with Amref Health Africa in Canada on a health project? Want to know more about our projects? Get in touch with our Director of Programmes, Kevin O'Neill.