Global community

Project X: Maternal Health and Boat Ambulance in Tanzania

In 2014 The Capital Lab raised awareness for the Plan Canada boat ambulance initiative in Tanzania. This project aim to give voice to the millions of women who do not have sufficient access to care during maternity. The Capital Lab raised $35,000 for Project X, becoming the key sponsor of the boat ambulance initiative in Tanzania, where currently 5 equipped boat ambulances are functioning and serving thousands in remote island communities.

For detailed informational on Tanzania’s first boat ambulance initiative please click here.

For more information on activities and events in support of this cause please email:

For the updated Plan Canada maternal health initiative in Tanzania:

Tanzania proposal – March 2017.pdfBecause I am a Girl

Key statistics on maternal health in sub-saharan Africa

  • In Canada, the risk of a woman dying during childbirth is 1 in 5,200. For women living in Africa, the risk is 1 in 40. Many maternal deaths go unrecorded.
  • 60 m births each year have no birth attendant, every woman should have the right to access health care when she is giving birth
  • Every 2 minutes a woman dies from a potentially preventable complication due to pregnancy
  • Motherhood has and continues to be glorified as a noble and selfless act, an act of giving and yet the means to ensure women can be healthy mothers continues to be denied to the many millions of women around the world. This is an expression of contradiction and injustice.

Highlights on Plan Canada report for improving maternal health in Tanzania and the boat ambulance program

  • A total of 5 boat ambulances transfer an average of 60 patients per month!
  • These boat ambulance program provide a real solution to the three delays present in maternal mortality: 1) The decision to delay seeking care due to low status, financial implications or acceptance of maternal mortality; 2) The delay in reaching care due to lack of infrastructure and resources to get to skilled care and 3) The delay in receiving care when needed due to shortage of supplies or poor training. Not only is access improved but the boat ambulance program is supported with training. 644 peer educators were trained to raise awareness of maternal and newborn health care.
  • In Tanzania, 199 health care facilities received equipment and training to provide improved emergency and newborn care services.