Committing to a Strong Start to Survive


  • In the new State of the World's Mothers Report, where countries are ranked from best to worst for mothers and children, the bottom ten countries are all in Africa.
  • Most of these countries are fragile states with poor medical infrastructure. 56% of maternal and child deaths take place in these kinds of fragile settings.
  • But progress is possible. Thanks in large part to U.S. support, child mortality in Africa has dropped by nearly a third over the past 20 years and ten African countries reduced the number of malaria cases and deaths by more than 50%.
Support a U.S.-Africa Partnership on Maternal, Newborn and Child Health

In 2012, alongside the governments of Ethiopia and India, the U.S. government led a global call to end preventable child deaths by the year 2035, launching a new era in the global movement for child survival. As a result, Ethiopia convened more than 20 other sub-Saharan African countries that committed to ending preventable child deaths. Countries such as Zambia, Ethiopia, Malawi, Nigeria, and Senegal have since launched their own Calls to Action, making their own political commitments, funding pledges and policy changes to address the greatest challenges in child survival in their own countries.

In 2013, President Obama reaffirmed in his State of the Union Address that ending preventable child deaths globally is a national priority for the United States.

In the last two decades, the world has halved the number of children dying each year from preventable causes; however, ending preventable child deaths in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia requires greater attention as they account for 4 out of 5 under-five child deaths globally.

We are at a pivotal moment in history in which we can envision ending preventable child deaths. The U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, hosted by the U.S. Government in August, is a key moment to lay out a development legacy on maternal, newborn and child health issues. It is a unique opportunity to announce a U.S.-Africa Partnership on Maternal and Child Health where both the U.S. and African leaders identify specific, innovative ways to accelerate progress on reducing maternal, newborn and child mortality and implementing existing national plans. Together, we can truly mark a turning point on newborn and child survival for millions of families throughout Africa.

Sign our petition to President Obama today!

We ask you to call on President Obama to prioritize children by announcing a U.S.-Africa Partnership on Maternal, Newborn and Child Health at the U.S. Africa-Leaders Summit. Take Action

Last Updated May 2014

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