Instead of experiencing the joy of welcoming her child into the world, Comfort suffered a childbirth injury of the worst kind – fistula.

Comfort’s life then became an unending nightmare of tragedy, fear, unimaginable pain, and deep shame.

Please will you help Comfort get the corrective surgery she needs right away?

No woman should ever have to suffer the horrors of fistula like Comfort

Obstetric fistula happens when a baby will not fit through the birth canal. The baby is forced deeper into the pelvis, becoming tightly wedged against the soft tissues of their mother’s bladder and vagina, compressing them against her pelvic bones. This crushing pressure over a long labour tears a hole in the birth canal – a fistula. Sadly, babies rarely survive. And mothers often lose their lives too.

While Comfort survived this horrifying experience, tragically, her baby did not.

You might not have heard about fistula because it rarely happens here in Australia. If a woman experiences labour complications like Comfort’s, she would quickly be given a caesarean section by her doctors. Saving both her baby and her body from further harm.

But in developing nations, the horror of fistula is hurting 75,000 women a year! In communities like the one Comfort lives in, it’s so misunderstood that many doctors don’t even know how to diagnose it.

As Comfort recalls…

“I spoke to the doctor saying it felt as if I was passing urine. He doubted at first then when he confirmed I was passing urine he said there’s nothing he can do about it. He advised that I should take native medicine, I started it and it didn’t help.”

The horrors a mum can suffer if her fistula isn’t repaired

The horror of excruciating pain and discomfort when a woman like Comfort becomes incontinent with urine and faeces leaking through the fistula hole, day and night.

The horror of the inescapable smell of waste that surrounds a woman because no matter how hard she tries, she can never stay clean.

The horror of shame and isolation when a woman like Comfort is rejected by her community, instead of receiving the help she desperately needs.

The horror of being trapped in poverty when a woman is shut out from opportunities to go to school, work and be part of the community.

Mums like Comfort can live for months or even years with an untreated fistula. Often while mourning the loss of their baby too.

Comfort held back tears as she said…

“I sell groceries for my sister in her community. Because of this condition, I reduced the number of times I go to the shop to sell.”

Surgery is the ONLY way to fix fistula

Here’s how you can help Mums like Comfort right away:

  • Your life-changing gift can raise awareness in communities like Comfort’s, so women can receive help and care, instead of being shunned by the people they love most.
  • Your healing gift can provide corrective surgery for a mum like Comfort, to put an end to the agonising suffering of her pain, shame and isolation.
  • Your training gift can train healthcare workers diagnose and treat obstetric fistula, so women can receive the medical care they desperately need as soon as possible.

Instead of receiving help, many women like Comfort are cast aside to suffer alone

Many are rejected by their own husbands and forced out of their homes. Some are made to leave their communities entirely.

In the parable of the woman who approaches Jesus in the crowd to touch his cloak, this woman had suffered twelve years of chronic menstrual bleeding – and had been shunned by society. She was desperate for help.

When Jesus asked, “Who touched my clothes?”, the woman trembled in fear as she revealed herself.

But Jesus responded with love. He said to her…

“Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.” Mark 5:34

Please will you respond with love and set a mum like Comfort free from the horror of fistula?