Last year in anticipation of going to Nepal, 4th year UBC Midwifery student, Kazuko Hiroe organized and directed a theatrical presentation elevating rural BC women’s voices around their reproductive experiences. The stories were written by rural women and presented in monologue style by amazing actors. The show was the last large gathering in Squamish before everything shut down due to COVID. The room was packed and she raised $3,500 in combination with an online auction to help support her travel to Nepal for her 3rd year Global Midwifery placement. Those travel plans were cancelled due to COVID-19.
This spring she donated all $3,500 to an amazing small organization called The Compassion Project based in the remote Tsum Valley, Nepal. There is no road access to the valley and it takes about 3-4 days to hike in by foot. The organization is run by a Canadian woman, and three Nepalese men originally from there. Two are brothers, their brother is an elected Chief in the area and their sister died of a postpartum hemorrhage. The organization’s number one goal is to reduce maternal and neonatal mortality and hire a Nepalese auxiliary nurse midwife. They have done just that and are continuing with amazing work. She spoke with the founder of the organization and it felt like the perfect fit. She wanted to support sustainable rural living and maternal/neonatal health.
For the auxiliary midwife, the most amazing experiences working in Tsum have been attending women at home births in the valley. Kazuko hopes to one day go to Tsum herself!
For more information about The Compassion Project and Tsum Valley projects, please visit https://www.compassionfortsum.ca