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A universal language for birth

August 3, 2016


The Childbirth Picture Book is a teaching tool that midwives and community health workers can use to explain pregnancy and birth to teens, women, and men, in the US and around the world. This resource provides a simple and complete guide to the basics of conception, pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding that community health workers can use to support messaging around the importance of a diverse, healthy diet during pregnancy, cleanliness during the birth process, immediate and exclusive breastfeeding after delivery, and more.

What makes this book so effective are the pages and pages of accessible, realistic, and easy-to-understand illustrations, so that irrespective of their reading ability, people can learn about what is happening to their bodies every step of the way, from conception to newborn care. Designed to encourage discussion, the Childbirth Picture Book is a useful teaching tool for midwives and community health workers. When paired with A Book for Midwives, it is particularly useful to use in multi-lingual or low-literacy settings.

More than half of all births in less developed countries happen at home, and supportive, knowledgeable care during pregnancy and birth can help ensure those babies and mothers stay healthy. In fact, research shows that most of the major causes of death among infants can be effectively addressed by community-level health workers provided with appropriate training and support. The Childbirth Picture Book is a great tool to aid that training, allowing front-line health workers to teach and empower their neighbors in a way that doesn’t depend on literacy.

The Childbirth Picture Book is now available from Hesperian in English, Spanish, French, Arabic and Urdu, and A Book for Midwives is available in English, Spanish, French, Nepali and Urdu.