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First Lady reaches out to infertile women

Oct. 3, 2019 3 min read

THABA-BOSIU – The First Lady ‘Maesaiah Thabane has called on all sectors of society to join hands to uproot the stigmatization of all women shorn of human honour because of infertility. Speaking at a one day media training to familiarize the media, as partners, to the scope of the foundation and her role as ambassador, Mrs Thabane said it was arduous to daily witness the disrespect hurled at women who cannot bear children by both their friends and families, indicating that though infertility was a problem for women “the stigma attached to it was not directed at them as females, but also on men.”

The training has been facilitated by international organization, Merck Foundation, in partnership with the ‘Maesaiah Thabane Trust Fund. The Merck Foundation is a philanthropic organization that aims to improve the health and wellbeing of people and to advance their lives through science and technology.  Its efforts are primarily focused on improving access to innovative healthcare solutions in underserved communities, building healthcare and scientific research capacity and empowering people with a special focus on women and youth.

The foundation raises awareness of disease prevention and early detection through access to information, health and change of mindset, expanding professional capabilities in scientific research, technology and healthcare. Mrs Thabane has also been appointed Lesotho’s ‘Merck more than a mother’ initiative ambassador, an effort by Merck Foundation to raise awareness on disease prevention and early detection through access to information, health and change of mindset.

The initiative further expands professional capabilities in scientific research, technology and healthcare, and builds advocacy to address health, social and economic solutions.In her brief but weighty remarks, Mrs Thabane appealed to the media to partner the joint effort to rid societies of stigma against infertile women.


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Present at the occasion was the health minister, Nkaku Kabi, who noted the day as the biggest in the history of Lesotho, especially when it reaches out to the problem of infertility - a problem he said that impacted on the very core of a family unit. “This touches of the very essence of a family, yet we seldom talk about. That is the reason we all must work together to help the First Lady in this noble work she has embarked upon,” minister Kabi said.

He noted infertility cut across the spectrum of the entire society, “from the very rural village to our own in towns and cities.” The minister applauded women for shouldering the scorn and pressure they are always burdened with “and yet they are not the only ones affected by infertility.” “This leads to stigma and them being shunned by friends and family, and I am calling upon you the First Lady to use your  strength in championing this difficult yet core aspect of family life…especially because it bears stigma,” he said.

“Let’s all open up and talk about infertility without fear of being stigmatized,” he said. The minister further revealed that in his ministry’s efforts to reach out to women and improve their lives they are planning to engage various specialists to focus on women related illnesses, adding “gynecologists to focus on women’s reproductive health are already here to commence work.” The training is attended by media personnel from both print and electronic media across the country.

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