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Safiatu Foday, Programme Analyst at UNFPA Sierra Leone and President of the Sierra Leone Midwives Association was on African Youth Voices television discussing International Day of the Midwife commemorated on 5 May. This year's theme: “Midwives: Defenders of Women's Rights”. UNFPA supports midwifery in the key areas of education, regulation, association and service delivery. As UNFPA Sierra Leone, since 2010 we have supported all midwifery institutions in the country (Freetown, Makeni and more recently Bo) in the areas of students’ scholarships, faculty development and clinical environment improvements. It is significant that so far that through UNFPA support, and with funds from UK aid we have collectively over 700 midwives to graduate and strengthen reproductive health services in Sierra Leone.

UNFPA has also supported the development of the first ever Strategic Plan for Midwifery and Nursing which was launched last March by His Excellency the President of the Republic of Sierra Leone during the conference of the West African College of Nursing. We are happy for the collaboration with the Offices of the Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer, Registrar of the Nurses and Midwives Board and the Sierra Leone Midwives Association in activities such as preceptorship policy development, regulatory bill finalisation, skills development in basic emergency and newborn care to mention a few.