Hamlin College of Midwives
A completed midwifery education at the Hamlin College of Midwives is an important step towards a sustainable prevention strategy for the women and girls of Ethiopia to avoid birth traumatic injuries, e.g. obstetric fistula that result in social stigma and immense suffering.
According to the United Nations Population Fund, every two minutes, somewhere in the world, a woman dies in pregnancy or labor. In Ethiopia alone, approximately 9,000 women die in obstructed labor each year with another 9,000 surviving, but with a fistula.
The Hamlin’s original intention for working in Ethiopia was to repair fistulas. The Hamlin Fistula Hospital was founded to provide fistula surgeries free of charge to suffering women. In the conviction that prevention is essential, Dr Hamlin founded the Hamlin College of Midwives, to train midwives so that women would have access to a clean and safe birth. Dr Hamlin has secured that the students are recruited among high school graduates in the provinces, trained in a four-year degree with a vigorous curriculum of theory and practice, then deployed back to the provinces to work alongside mothers and families. In 2010, the first 11 graduates were employed in Health Centers in areas close to the regional centers. Presently, over 70 midwives are in training at the college.