The Lutheran Church in Liberia has intensified a campaign to educate pregnant women on the importance of the safety of their babies. The campaign, styled: “Big Belly Business” is covering nine communities in Bong County with support from the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSEWA) in collaboration with the Ministry of Health (MoH).
Speaking to journalists in Monrovia recently, the Program Manager, Sue Laymouth, said there are several problems confronting pregnant women throughout Liberia that need to be immediately addressed. She named domestic violence, neglect, metal disorder, malaria as well as lack of balanced diet as key issues that pregnant women encounter on a daily basis. “There are several problems confronting women with pregnancy. Some of them are suffering from mental disorder because their fiancées disowned their pregnancies. Some don’t have balanced diet that has led some to suffer from mental disorder,” she said. Miss Laymouth said the women have also been educated on the use of mosquito nets to prevent malaria, which affects many pregnant women. Miss Laymouth said the LCL trained big belly relatives to educate them with respect to the basic issues from a manual prepared by OSIWA and partners. According to her, the pregnant women have been grouped into clubs in nine communities for education purposes. “Our big belly brothers and sisters let them to know that their babies need to be born in hospitals or at health centers. They need to be fed with good food. We also taught them about family planning especially those young ones that need to go back to school,” she emphasized. Miss Laymouth furthered that the awareness has brought more pregnant women into the program due to exposure and the lessons they have learnt. Madam Laymouth has therefore called for the extension of the awareness campaign to other counties where some people are still shy over their pregnancy.