Harima Dala is the secretary of Mother Group at Mtimabii Health Centre in rural Mangochi as well as the vice secretary of the Electricity Management Committee in the area. She is passionate about helping create a safer future for pregnant women, as she knows the dangers of darkness all too well.
“I am one of the people who faced problems during child delivery. When I was pregnant, I stayed in the waiting room for two months. After two months, labour pains started. It was around 11:00 o’clock at night. We rushed to the Labour Section but it was completely dark. Some people went out to buy paraffin but they found the shop closed. They went on to ask for light from other people. By the time they came back, the baby was already born. I’d delivered in complete darkness.”
And the danger didn’t end there. When Halima gave birth, her baby started showing breathing difficulties. She needed an ambulance to bring her to a nearby hospital, but couldn’t manage to get to the ambulance because of the darkness.
“The nurses called for an ambulance to rush us to Mangochi district hospital. When the ambulance came, we had to borrow a glass covered lamp from the nearby houses. This is one of the burdens that I went through. I was deeply touched by this.”
Now, women giving birth at Mtimabii Health Centre no longer have to fear the darkness. The centre is lit up with clean, safe solar power.
No woman should have to give birth in the dark. That is why together, solar aid and the communities are solar powering healthcare.