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Living Proof: Malawi – Kangaroo Mother Care
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Living Proof: Malawi – Kangaroo Mother Care
A very simple idea is helping pre-term babies survive in Malawi. Kangaroo mother care, supported by USAID and Save the Children, teaches mothers to increase the body temperatures of their newborns by wrapping the babies to their bare chests.
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Produced by Living Proof. Find out more at ONE.org/livingproof.

Learn more about the Kangaroo Mother Care program.

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Segment 1

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Challenge: Every year in developing countries, almost one million pre-term babies die in their first month of life. Hypothermia, infection, and feeding difficulties are among the leading causes.
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Solution: Provide critical newborn care using natural heat.
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Can the human body replace an incubator?
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Malawi
GRACE NDOTO
It took me nine years to get pregnant. I was seven months pregnant, but all of the sudden my blood pressure was just high. The doctors said the case was very serious. They decided to deliver through operation. The chances were just 50/50 to be alive or not.
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Every year in Malawi, 20,000 mothers like Grace lose their pre-term babies due to low birth weight.
GRACE NDOTO
Imagine, after nine years without a child. I felt bad. Tuntufye was born at 820 grams.
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820 grams = 1.8 pounds
GRACE NDOTO
She was less than a packet of sugar. It was then when some nurses advised me to go for kangaroo mother care.
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In kangaroo mother care, mothers wrap babies to their bare chests.
GRACE NDOTO
I went there, and my child started growing.
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Skin-to-skin contact helps reduce hypothermia, improve feeding, and promote bonding.
GRACE NDOTO
She was adding grams every day. When a baby is premature, it needs three important things: that is heat, food, and love. You provide heat with skin contact. You provide food easily. When the baby is here, the love is also there. There is strong bondage between you and baby. Kangaroo mother care really assisted my daughter to be alive today, to see her today, to talk with her today. It saved my baby's life. Now, I am visiting people in my community, in my church, at the hospital, preaching about the kangaroo mother care. I spend time with my fellow mothers, telling them the benefits of kangaroo mother care. Tuntufye now is three years old. When she grows up I will tell her the story. She's my love, she's my only, and I am a living example. Yeah.
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Living Proof: Real Lives. Real Progress.
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Since 2002, 11 countries have introduced kangaroo mother care units in their hospitals. In 2003, the World Health Organization formally endorsed kangaroo mother care as an effective treatment to protect newborns.
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Living Proof: Real Lives. Real Progress. www.one.org/livingproof