Village Birthing Kits are in Use

Lutheran Women all over Australia have been captured by the idea of packing Birthing Kits for use in villages in Papua New Guinea. Margaret Voigt reports that the birthing kits are in use and are a wonderful blessing to our sisters in Papua New Guinea.

After some problems in delivery, the birthing kits are now reaching the village midwives who are very pleased to have them, and wish to thank the Lutheran Women of Australia for their help in supplying some essential needs for a village delivery.

I have just returned from a visit to PNG and with the leader of the Village Midwife program in the Madang area, Sr Seva Banag, a trained and experienced midwife, we were able to deliver the first birthing kits in the area. Due to heavy rain, the road was flooded but we managed to all wade to a dry area to show the kits to the 5 village midwives of that area and hand them out. These kits provide essential supplies to the midwives for village deliveries. These deliveries are done on a bamboo or a dirt floor. The plastic and old linen create a clean delivery area and the other supplies for the actual delivery are very necessary.

These village midwives are selected by their village to attend all deliveries in their village. They do not have a lot of training, but as haemorrhage and infection are the main cause of village deaths, a clean area for deliver and some simple techniques to control haemorrhage will save many lives. The midwives were very pleased to have these supplies to work with, and told me they had no maternal deaths in their villages since the program was started, but we are still waiting on statistics to see the overall effects of the program.

Another 100 kits were also sent 3 hours by speed boat to village midwives in a remote area where there is no chance of people getting to a hospital, there are 200 midwives in the area, so more kits will be sent down. At the moment the seas are very rough and the boats cannot always travel. We did not visit the area but know of its remoteness from a previous visit. A training centre for village midwives has been built of local material in this area, and Sr Banag goes down to conduct training sessions in the area.

Besides the Madang area, kits went to Finschhafen and Menyamya areas and, later in the year, it is planned to start programs in the Kotna area and on Karkar island.

These kits can only be used once, so please keep them coming as they are a great help in doing village delivery.

If you would like to consider the opportunity to join God’s mission through the assembling and donation of Birthing Kits, you are invited to phone Nevin Nitschke on (08) 8267 7300 or email For more information, go to

Read more stories about our partner church in Papua New Guinea at