St John Malawi
Since 1988, St John Scotland has supported our sister organisation, St John Malawi, to improve the lives of children and families living in one of Africa’s poorest countries.
There is an urgent need for health services in Malawi: for every 1,000 children born, 42 will die before their first birthday, compared to only three in Scotland. In Scotland, one of every 5,800 women runs a lifetime risk of dying during pregnancy, childbirth or after delivery. In Malawi, it is one of every 39.
In and around the city of Blantyre, St John Malawi run an established mother and baby programme, which has saved lives and greatly improved the health of families in the area.
As well as our long-standing support for this project, in 2018 we were granted funding from the Scottish Government to support a new project based around the Lilongwe area.
The five-year programme will help thousands of people improve their health, and will reach 57,000 people at home, including more than 10,000 expectant and new parents.
Local St John Malawi volunteers make door-to-door visits to households, teaching pregnant women about nutrition and antenatal check-ups, and helping them prepare for delivery.
In remote villages, where health services are unavailable, St John and local health staff run outreach clinics to bring services to some of the country’s most vulnerable people. In all, nearly 100,000 people will benefit directly from the programme.
It is hoped the programme – which has been funded until 2023 – will also contribute to the sustainable development of Malawi’s health sector in the long term.