5th Annual Congress

“Midwives on the Move: Empowering Midwives, Ensuring Healthy Women and
Families” was the Congress theme for the Afghan Midwives Association (AMA) 5th
Annual Congress, held on May 3-4, 2009. Pashtoon Azfar, AMA President, in her
welcoming remarks used the theme to call attention to the key role of Afghan
midwives in maternal and neonatal mortality reduction and recognizes that saving
women’s lives protects and strengthens the health and well-being of their families.
The aim of the Annual Congress was to provide an opportunity to share midwifery
experiences, best practices, and learn new approaches to care for mothers and
newborns. The Congress also was an opportunity for AMA members to engage in
networking and to develop supportive relationships as friends and colleagues.
More than 400 Midwives travelled from 28 provinces in Afghanistan to attend this
event. The difficulties of travel and security caused some delayed arrivals, but there
were no reports of any midwives giving up and turning back. The excitement about
gathering together with other midwives and having an opportunity to attend
educational sessions generated strong motivation and commitment. In addition,
invited guests attended the opening and closing ceremonies and more than 50
physicians and other health workers attended the educational sessions.

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