Mona is a midwife and takes her job very seriously. She receives on average ten women per day at her home clinic and doesn’t allow being eight months pregnant to distract her from her clients.
Since 2007, she has practiced midwifery in rural areas just outside of Yemen’s capital Sana’a, but it wasn’t until 2012 when she joined Marie Stopes International Yemen’s social franchise midwife network that she was able to set up her own in-house clinic.
Upon joining the network, known as Rayaheen, Mona received additional healthcare training in family planning methods, counselling, infection prevention and client relationships as well as record keeping and micro business. “It’s been really great for improving my skills” she said. “I now can insert and remove IUDs and implants.”
When Mona began setting up her own clinic, little did she know that she would have such business acumen. To attract clients Mona made her clinic a one-stop shop for women. Hygiene and beauty products now share shelf space with medicines and family planning information brochures. Mona says not only do the beauty products attract women they put women at ease in a clinical setting.
The money Mona makes from her beauty business is ploughed back into her clinic and over time has allowed her to expand it from one room to three: a consultation room, waiting room, and delivery room. It’s also made Mona the woman of reference in her village and surrounding villages for health and beauty.
While visiting women pop in and out of her clinic for eyeliner, nail polish and other beauty products, many also spend the time learning about family planning options, and regular clients have their blood pressure checked. She says she loves her job and provides services for any woman - those who can pay and those who can’t because everyone deserves to deliver a baby safely.