About the project

"BIRTH IS A DREAM" is a documentary project which aims to document and raise awareness about maternal health in sub-Saharan Africa. 

Every year in Sub-Saharan Africa 200.000 mothers die from complications of pregnancy and childbirth.
A mother's death is a human tragedy, affecting families and communities. Her death endangers the lives of a surviving newborn and any other young children; a mother's death makes it harder for the family to obtain life's necessities and escape the crush of poverty. A great many of these deaths are preventable, when women have access to quality prevention, diagnostic, and treatment services.

The project is the work of Paolo Patruno, an Italian social/documentary photographer and videomaker.

 I started my project in Malawi, where the words for pregnancy in the local language—'pakati' and 'matenda'—translate into 'between life and death' and 'sick'.
That’s where I met an English midwife, Rachel MacLeod, who practiced for nearly 14 years in Spain before moving to Malawi to work as a senior clinical midwife in the labor ward of the Bwaila Hospital, in the capital Lilongwe; she opened my eyes to the maternal health crisis in Africa.
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Since 2011 the project has been shot across Cameroon, DRC, Ethiopia, Malawi, Morocco, Mozambique, Uganda and Zimbabwe.


"BIRTH IS A DREAM" is dedicated to all the African mothers.


(Photo: Rachel MacLeod)

Birth is a Dream

maternal health, maternity, reproductive health, women, childbirth, birth, maternal mortality, africa, Cameroon, DRC, Ethiopia, Malawi, Morocco, Mozambique, Uganda, Zimbabwe
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