Saskatchewan

A Regina mother helps new mothers in developing countries

Erin MacAulay Davalos has always been interested in development work, but it wasn't until she had her own child that she found her passion for maternal health issues.

Mamas 4 Mamas helping women in Honduras

Erin Macaulay Davalos, seen here with one of her two children, is the founder of Mamas 4 Mamas, an organization dedicated to maternal and infant health projects. (mamas4mamas.ca)

Erin MacAulay Davalos has always been interested in development work, but it wasn't until she had her own child that she found her passion for maternal health issues. 

"After I had my baby I realized how lucky we are to have the high quality of care we have in Canada because women in many countries in the world just don't have that opportunity," MacAulay Davalos said. 

The young mother said she felt lucky to have had a midwife that made her feel well informed, well cared for and nurtured.

Before she had a family, MacAulay Davalos did an internship in Mozambique through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).

One of her good girlfriends in Mozambique was pregnant while MacAulay Davalos was there for her internship. She said they spent a lot of time talking about what birth would be like for her friend.  

"She didn't expect to go to the hospital to birth her baby because she didn't have enough money to pay. She was expecting to have the baby at home in her rural hut with mud floors," MacAulay Davalos recounted.

"In a lot of countries around the world, including with my girlfriend in Mozambique, they don't have a lot of compassion during labour and delivery. My girlfriend said when she had her first baby people said suck it up and don't make noise."

Erin MacAuley Davalos and her friend Mia in Mozambique. (mamas4mamas.ca)

It was the disparity between her own experience and her friend's experience that prompted MacAulay Davalos to start the organization Mamas 4 Mamas.

Her non-profit is dedicated to supporting maternal and infant health projects in under-served populations around the world by supporting grassroots organizations that are working with mothers and babies. 

MacAulay said her husband has played an important role with the organization. He is a member of the Regina band Andino Suns and he has used his musical connections to organize regular coffeehouse performances to raise money for the organization. 

Over the last year the group has managed to raise more than $2,000 and next week MacAulay and a friend will be travelling to Honduras for 10 days to deliver the money and volunteer with their chosen organization Dar a Luz.

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