$10m to improve global maternal and infant health outcomes


Alliance magazine


The Patchwork Collective, ICONIQ Impact, and Lever for Change have partnered to launch the Maternal & Infant Health Award, a $10 million grant competition to help improve maternal and infant health outcomes around the world.

Mothers play a critical role in the family and society, yet women in low-resource countries and communities often lack access to safe, equitable, and quality maternal and infant healthcare. According to the most recent data, over 800 women die each day from preventable complications related to pregnancy and childbirth. For each of those, an additional 20 to 30 women suffer delivery-related injuries, infections, and disabilities. Meanwhile, millions of children under the age of five die annually – the majority from preventable and treatable causes, such as birth asphyxia, pneumonia, congenital anomalies, diarrhoea, and malaria. In 2019, the last year in which figures are available, there were approximately 5.2 million child deaths.

Access to maternal and infant healthcare is often determined by location, socio-economic status, and race. Inadequate maternal healthcare can result in undetected, severe complications for both the mother and child—that are mostly preventable through timely intervention, treatment, and adequate care. 

‘Many mothers and infants worldwide still have little or no access to fundamental health services,’ said the co-founder of The Patchwork Collective. ‘Though we’ve made some progress, it’s not been nearly enough. Globally, mortality rates remain high, and, in the U.S., maternal and infant health outcomes are marked by stark racial disparities. With this award, we are focused on sourcing and scaling community-led solutions that will drive improvements in maternal and infant health for the most marginalized communities.’

The Maternal & Infant Health Award is the third in a series of grant competitions managed by Lever for Change in collaboration with ICONIQ Impact.

‘This much-needed Maternal & Infant Health Award will provide communities around the world with the dedicated resources they need to prioritize the health of their mothers and children,’ said Cecilia Conrad, CEO of Lever for Change.

More details on the Maternal & Infant Health Award can be found at maternalinfanthealthaward.org.

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