After receiving valuable feedback from Field Partners, our Birthing Kits now contain a 20-gram bar of individually wrapped soap, in lieu of the small, unwrapped portions previously provided.

The significance of a small bar of soap may not be something that crosses the mind of many Australians.

However, to those who receive our Birthing Kits and the Field Partners that we work with overseas, the significance is great. To the women and birthing attendants who utilise the kits, the larger portion of wrapped soap will better serve their hygiene needs, minimise the chance of contamination, and further reduce the risk of infection.  To our Field Partners and the team at BKFA, the new bar of soap signifies the value of feedback, learning, adaptation and continual growth.

Over the past year, BKFA has worked in collaboration with more than 40 organisations in 18 different countries to reach individuals, families and communities through the Birthing Kit Program.

As this work takes place in a variety of social, cultural, environmental and economic settings, it is important to understand the context in which our Field Partners work so that the program impact can be understood and continually enhanced.

During the last grant year, our partners reported that 50% of kits were given to health centres/clinics and 13% direct to expectant mothers. A key element of the program is that the kits are distributed with guidelines for use. Our partners take a range of approaches to promote the correct use of kits and provide important education on maternal and newborn health – radio announcements, community health teams and discussion sessions are just a few of the strategies used.

Open communication with all of our partners and bi-annual reporting allows for continual learning and insight into the day-to-day operations of the Birthing Kit Program. The new bar of soap is just one example of how feedback can drive adaptation and change. At BKFA, we believe that learning from experience is the key to enhancing impact and sparking positive change.