Making it Happen – Obstetrics

Year established 2018
Sectors NHS
Country Kamuzu College Of Nursing (Lilongwe) - University Of Malawi, Lilongwe, Malawi

Overall goals

The 'making it happen project’ supported UK midwives and doctors to provide training. Previously with a group of midwives and obstetricians, supported by the Scottish Government, we ran and coordinated Advanced life support in Obstetrics training in Malawi over a five year period.

Other activities -

A 2-year secondment to the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine involved working on projects in Zimbabwe,  South Africa and Namibia as part of an 11 country DFID funded obstetric emergency program.

A peer-reviewed study into barriers to quality of care and monitoring of facilities ability to provide care quality that women value.

(A UNICEF tetanus campaign in Angola and Nepal as part of the RCM Twinning campaign.)

Key UK Colleagues and Partners

Centre for Maternal and Newborn Health, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine.
RCM (Royal College of Midwives)
Advance Life Support in Obstetrics

Sustainable development goals

  • SDG 3 - Good health and well-being
  • SDG 10 - Reduced inequalities

Funding source

ASLO-initial fundraising then gov support
Making it Happen- DFID
Namibia -WHO
The study in South Africa-Wellbeing of Women/RCM/Burdett trust fellowship
Cambodia(successful application for funding was in partnership with German aid organisation

Project origin


Evidence of need


Project areas

Training and education.
Project management and grant/funding applications.

Project activities



Any training was measured to Kirkpatrick 5 at the Centre for maternal and newborn health, so impact on outcomes for mothers and babies.
Study was aimed at identifying simple and effective ways to measure womens experience of care.

Next steps



It is important to warn against well-meaning volunteering that does not fit THET criteria or does not have clear outcomes and that has been agreed with in-country partners.

Mitigating challenges

Was very lucky to work with experienced researchers in many countries. Would not have undertaken studies without these links to ensure that projects were appropriate.
Working with structured, well-evaluated and ethical agencies is important.
It is essential to be work with Ministries of Health and other agencies to build partnerships and reciprocal learning etc.
There are huge opportunities for shared learning, research and teaching but also many innovative solutions have been developed in low resource settings, often due to outcome focused, well funded, time-limited projects that we can learn from and look at Scottish application.
Building remote and rural partnerships sharing training and teaching and research opportunities have a real future.

Project gains

  • leadership
  • teamwork
  • awareness
  • academic
  • resilience

Related documents

Return to the partnership map