Case Study for Embrace Global

In the heart of Africa, a young mother fights desperately to save her baby’s life…

Because of your support, Embrace was there to help her

A mother’s love is a powerful force of nature.

It gives her the courage to fight for her baby’s survival, and it gives life to her child. But a mother’s love is not always enough…

The Embrace warmer supplements the loving touch of mothers in developing nations, where premature and underweight babies are more susceptible to death from hypothermia than any other condition. Without Embrace, the baby girl in this story would not be alive today, despite her Mother’s heroic efforts to keep both herself and her child alive.

Our Story Begins

On May 5, 2013, a 27-year-old African woman named Nantongo gave birth to a tiny baby girl on the floor of a grass-thatched hut. The premature baby weighed a mere 2.4 pounds – five pounds less than the average weight of a healthy newborn.

The premature birth resulted from a condition called “placental abruption,” in which the placenta separates too soon from uterus. When untreated, this condition often proves fatal for both the baby and mother, who often requires a blood transfusion and intensive care after birth.

The sad scene on the floor of Nantongo’s hut showed bleak circumstances. Tiny and weak, Nantongo’s little baby was unable to nurse or gain strength. Nantongo, who was developing a fever and losing too much blood, was also approaching dangerous territory.

A Desperate Move

The situation worsened over the course of the next day for both mother and baby, who had no access to modern medical care in their remote village.

But Nantongo displayed the ferocious determination of a mother lion defending her cub. Pushed by the force of a mother’s pure love, Nantongo, made a bold move. Taking her baby girl with her, Nantongo drove on a motorcycle for nearly two hours to the Mulago Hospital, where Embrace team members were stationed to help.

Reaching the hospital was the only chance Nantongo had to save her baby’s life – and possibly her own. But by getting on that motorcycle, Nantongo risked everything. The ride exposed Nantongo and her newborn child to high winds at cold temperatures, and by the time they reached the hospital the underweight baby’s body temperature had dropped dangerously low.

Last Chance for Survival

Upon reaching the hospital, Nantongo nearly collapsed off the motorcycle with exhaustion. Nurses rushed to the new mother’s aid and brought the baby inside, where Embrace medical workers quickly wrapped her in an Embrace warmer. Embrace restored the baby’s body temperature to a healthy range within ten minutes using only minimal electricity.

Warm and comfortable for the first time, Nantongo’s baby was able to feed, and over the next several days began gaining the weight she needed to survive.

Fact: Embrace Saves Lives

Nantongo displayed amazing fortitude in her journey to the hospital. She was also incredibly lucky that the Mulago hospital had Embrace warmers on hand. Without Embrace, there is a good chance even the hospital would not have been able to save the baby’s life. Here’s why:

  • In developing nations, hospitals are overcrowded, underfunded, and experience a high number of power outages
  • Modern neonatal incubators are both expensive and require constant electricity, making them an unrealistic option for third world hospitals
  • The Embrace warmer costs a fraction of a state-of-the-art incubator and only uses small, intermittent amounts of electricity

A Message from Nantongo

The Embrace warmer saved Nantongo’s baby’s life, and with your help it can do the same for millions of other babies in developing nations.

As Nantongo told us her story her eyes sparkled with gratitude, and she left us with a few words that reminded us why we go to work at Embrace each day:

“Thank you so much for the Embrace warmer. My child gained life again in Embrace.”