South Sudan

My name is Maria Gasingo. I am 28 years old. I live in Tali, which is in Terekeka County of South Sudan.

This is my third baby. He is six days old. When I was pregnant, I used to go to the Tali Primary Health Care Centre for check-ups. On the day I went into labour, I walked to the health centre, about half an hour’s walk away from my house. It took me a long time to get there because I was bleeding a lot, but there was no other means to go there.

At the health centre, they checked me and told me that the placenta had come out before the baby. They said that I had to go to Lui Hospital immediately. They checked me and put me on fluids, and then I was brought to Lui Hospital in the AMREF vehicle. Lui is very far from Tali – it takes three to four hours by car, and the road is very rough. I was accompanied by a clinical officer and my husband. When we arrived at the hospital, they gave me more fluids and they even gave me blood. I was taken to theatre for an operation to deliver my baby.

I am so happy that I came. I was afraid that I was going to die, or that my baby would die, but we are both safe and well. Not all the women are as fortunate as I was. Many lose their babies because they cannot get help in time, and many women themselves die. What would have happened to me if the AMREF vehicle was not available to bring me to Lui? Me and my baby might not be alive. I wish we could have a good hospital near home so that we can get proper assistance any time we need it.

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