Embrace is exceptionally lucky to have five amazing women as Embrace Fellows, representing our organization in the field. It is because of their incredible dedication and expertise that we are able to operate and implement such effective and impactful pilot programs in India, Uganda and Zambia. The Embrace Fellowship program has been designed to provide support in product training, data collection and education program development. Our fellows have been instrumental in ensuring that the Embrace infant warmers are being used correctly and effectively, collecting baseline data that allows us to quantitatively measure our impact, creating awareness about the dangers and prevalence of neonatal hypothermia, and training mothers about neonatal care, including the practice and importance of Kangaroo Mother Care (skin to skin contact) when they are discharged from the hospital. The Embrace Team is grateful for the commitment and support of our fellows, and truly appreciates all of their hard work. Our fellows introduce themselves below.
Poornima Nair, SEWA Rural, IndiaWhen I left Baroda to join Embrace Global as a Fellow, it was with a desire to make a difference and to give my best to a revolutionary new idea that was saving lives of the most vulnerable – babies with low birth weight. I worked for the last eight months on a project on neonatal hypothermia at ‘SEWA Rural’, Jhagadia. Moving to Jhagadia was a quick and easy decision because I had been there as an intern during my post-graduate studies when I got my first exposure to public health in rural India. It was a matter of coming back to friends, to work as colleagues with people who had taught me so much during the internship. As a fellow, my primary responsibility was to introduce the ‘Embrace Nest’ at the Kasturba Hospital of SEWA rural and observe its impact. My stint with Embrace Global was fulfilling and enriching and at the same time it brought home the reality that so much more needed to be done. I would like to believe that my work there also strengthened the ties between Embrace and SEWA Rural. At Jhagadiya, I found a home away from home. I could never forget the way SEWA Rural family opened up their homes and hearts and treated me as one of their own. And I could never forget the smiles on the faces of the new mothers as they took home their babies who had been given a second chance at survival.
Nivedita Bhushan, Karuna Trust, India
Nivedita Bhushan is an International Development master’s student at the George Washington University. She is pursuing a concentration in rural development and public health with a focus on agriculture. She currently works at the Bureau of Labor Statistics as an Economist in the Office of Safety and Health and holds a Bachelor’s of Arts in Economics and International Politics from the Pennsylvania State University.
Jesca Audo, Teso Safe Motherhood Project, Uganda
I was born in western Uganda in 1982. I went to nursing school as a nursing assistant and then was sponsored in 2008 by Jennifer Braun to complete my nursing comprehensive. Last year, I completed my training and then was welcomed back to TSMP as a midwife. I am a single mother with an eight-year-old son. He is doing very well at school. I want to thank the organization for helping me with school. I really appreciate it even though I don’t have any way of expressing my happiness. I enjoy my days here very much and love the new experiences, and the difficult deliveries. My skills are always sharpening. Thanks to Embrace for identifying the need to help the low birth weight, premature and hypothermic infants as I delight in giving reports on the Embrace warmers donated to Teso Safe Motherhood Project.
Lizzy Namwaba, University Teaching Hospital, Zambia
My full name is Namwaba Lizzy. I was born on the 10th of October, 1986, in northern Zambia, in a village called Kasakalawe. I am from a family of 13, six of them are half siblings we share a father and from my mother we are seven. I am the second last born, therefore, am number twelve in my family. Of the thirteen, seven are females and six are males. I am proud to say that of the seven girls, I am the only one that managed to finish secondary school and go to university, the rest got married, even before finishing their secondary education including my younger sister.
I started grade one in nothern Zambia up to grade two, and did the rest of my primary school in Lusaka. Later, I moved to Luapula province where I did my secondary school after which, I proceeded to the University of Zambia in 2008 to 2012. I studied Special Education with Religious Studies as my minor.
While at UNZA, I did a lot of research projects with different international organizations. I worked as a research assistant, where I collected data in the field, helped to train research assistants and also helped with data entry. I also participated in a study done by Harvard University and University of Zambia on cognitive development of six year olds, and have been helping with research by iSchool Zambia on critical analysis of primary school going children.
Currently, I am working as a special education teacher at a government school, I teach classes for the blind, and the hearing impaired. I also work party-time as an Embrace fellow at UTH.
Petronella Bhemba, University Teaching Hospital, Zambia
I am 22 years old going on 23 this November on the 12th. I spent most of my childhood in the Copper Belt province of Zambia. I moved to Lusaka and went to a girls mission (Catholic) boarding school in the out-skits of Lusaka. I then went to UNZA and pursued Psychology for my undergraduate program. I have a young sister who is training to be a teacher and 3 elder brothers. I live with my uncle and aunt and a couple of cousins.
I am a missionary at heart and so, I usually help plan and go on mission trips with a ministry called Navigators. I am an adventurer at heart! I also like reading and listening to music, particularly the genre acapella. I like playing volleyball and dancing.
To learn more about the Embrace Fellowship program visit our website, or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
Operations Coordinator, Embrace