A free, panel presentation in Cobourg featuring first-hand accounts of traditional Indigenous Maya midwives, health providers and leaders
Remote, marginalized and underserved – this is the reality rural Indigenous communities in Guatemala resiliently struggle against. Indigenous women are twice as likely to die during pregnancy or childbirth as non-Indigenous women, and Indigenous infants are two-thirds more likely to die than non-Indigenous infants.
Given these disparities, traditional Indigenous midwives known as comadronas are vital in caring for a population that has been, and continues to be, discriminated against.
Horizons of Friendship, a Canadian charity, and its local Guatemalan partner PIES have embarked on a four-year project with support from Global Affairs Canada to help prevent the deaths and transform the lives of Indigenous Maya K’iche’ women and children in Totonicapán, Guatemala. Totonicapán is a province with some of the worst health indicators in the country.
Valenzuela Cos is one of the youngest comadronas in her municipality, and is being trained and equipped through this project. Dr. Hannaly Ruíz is the Head of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Totonicapán Provincial Hospital. Lucrecia Pisquiy is the Gender Equality Coordinator for PIES.