In the serene landscapes of the Krachie Nchumuru district, Oti Region-Ghana, the anticipation of motherhood often comes with its own set of challenges. For many expectant mothers like 26-year-old Ruth Por, the journey to motherhood is fraught with obstacles; from financial constraints to the long distance to the nearest health facility.
Ruth’s story is not uncommon. In remote parts of Ghana, access to quality healthcare, especially prenatal care, remains elusive for many. But on September 1 this year, a glimmer of hope shone through. The Vodafone Ghana Foundation, in collaboration with the Divine Mother and Child Foundation (DMAC), organised its free Rural Ultrasound Screening event. The initiative aims to bridge the maternal healthcare gap in these remote areas.
For Ruth, news of the free ultrasound screening was nothing short of a godsend. Despite being advanced in her pregnancy, she had not had the privilege of an ultrasound – primarily due to her financial situation and distance to the clinic. Announcement of the screening, relayed by her community’s gong-gong beater, was a beacon of hope. The fact that transportation, a 30-minute journey from her community, was also provided made the opportunity even more accessible.
Upon arrival at the Borae Health Centre, Ruth – along with other expectant mothers – was registered and educated on the importance of antenatal care and nutrition during pregnancy. But for Ruth, the day held an even bigger surprise.
After her ultrasound, which confirmed her baby’s well-being, Ruth unexpectedly went into labour. Within a short span of time she welcomed a healthy baby boy into the world. “It’s nothing short of a miracle,” Ruth said gratefully. “Had it not been for this event, the journey to the clinic would have been costly and I might have arrived too late.”
Interestingly, Ruth’s unexpected delivery is not an isolated incident. Dora Manwuro, a resident of Amanase in the Ayensuano district, had a similar experience last year. After receiving a free ultrasound scan courtesy of the Vodafone Ghana Foundation’s Rural Ultrasound Scan Programme, Dora went into labour and soon welcomed a healthy baby boy. To date, the programme has provided over 20,000 pregnant women with free ultrasound scans, underscoring its transformative impact in rural Ghana.
Rita Agyeiwaa Rockson, Head of Vodafone Ghana Foundation and External Communications, emphasised the significance of such initiatives, stating: “Pregnancy is often a daunting journey for women, and access to ultrasound screenings can be a game-changer in ensuring the health and well-being of both mothers and their unborn children. I am delighted by the impact we are making in these rural communities. Vodafone Foundation will continue to work with government agencies and our implementing partners to improve the quality of life for beneficiaries in our communities”.
Ruth’s story is another testament to the profound impact of such initiatives. Alidu Mavis, another beneficiary, shared her appreciation for the programme that allowed her to gauge her pregnancy’s progress. Through such endeavours, the Vodafone Ghana Foundation is ensuring that the journey to motherhood, even in the most remote parts of Ghana, is one filled with hope, care and joy.