Today is International Day to End Obstetric Fistula. As we celebrate with many women around the world who have surgery to treat obstetric fistula and other birth-induced injuries, we share their hope, joy and happiness. For many, after years of suffering from the debilitating and ostracizing condition that is obstetric fistula, the joy and beauty of healing is immense.

Part of the post-surgery rest, recovery and recuperation period here at Kivulini Maternity Centre is devoted to recreation. During that time, our patients can relax, enjoying being themselves and being friends. Perhaps, for some, after enduring significant loneliness, hardship and pain, this time could be one of their most precious.

Pictured are some lovely ladies who recently went through surgery. They spent some time with our volunteers, Lene and Marie. The patients were aged from as young as 12, to 60 years. They painted each others’ nails, and sang songs together when their nails were drying.

One of the ladies said, “Singing songs makes us so happy. When we sing, we’re not sad.” So the ladies clapped, laughed and kept on singing. Wherever you looked, you could see the biggest smile on the face of every lady who sang. It was a life-affirming day – a day filled with happiness.

As Maternity Africa continues to prepare for 30-40 surgeries over the next few days, we look forward to sharing more hope, joy and happiness with more beautiful patients.

Maternity Africa. Making Childbirth Safe.