Delivering a baby in Afghanistan can be a life or death event. Every thirty minutes, another Afghan woman dies during childbirth—the country holds one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world. For every woman who dies, it is estimated that 20 more survive with significant childbirth injuries, including obstetric fistula. There is also…
Her husband married a second wife, who gave birth to several children over the next few years. Lida was allowed to remain in the household, but she felt lonely and useless. When she first heard about free treatment at CURE Hospital in Kabul a few years ago, she did not yet allow herself to hope because she knew her husband would never agree to take her to Kabul. Their village was on the opposite side of the country and transportation was expensive; plus, she told herself, her husband and his second wife no longer needed her.
Luckily, a caring aunt and nephew helped Lida get to Kabul. She arrived at CURE Hospital and was overwhelmed to find dozens of other women suffering from the same condition. That, along with the kindness of hospital staff, brought her to tears, and doctors report that she continued to cry tears of joy for several days.
After being evaluated and officially diagnosed with fistula, Lida underwent a successful repair surgery and woke up dry for the first time in 12 years. Overjoyed, she left the hospital full of hope for the future.
- Population: 33,332,025
- Average Births per Woman: 5.22
- Female Literacy: 24.2%
- Population Living in Poverty: 36% (less than $1.25/day)