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Superhero Midwife: Meet Hawrin

Hawrin is 27-year-old. Five years ago, she decided to become a midwife.

We had a chat with Hawrin about her work as a midwife at the UNFPA-supported reproductive health facility in Khazir camp. 

Why did you become a midwife?

“Being a midwife is my calling. I always knew I wanted to help women and girls understand their reproductive rights and help them receive proper reproductive health care, starting with menstruation, pregnancy and reaching menopause,” she said. 

Tell us about your favourite memory on the job?

“In 2020, a 35-year old pregnant woman comes to our clinic with abdominal pain. After conducting a medical check-up, I understood that she was going through early labour for the last 5 hours and urgently needed to be taken to the maternity hospital in Erbil for an emergency delivery”, she explained. 

Hawrin after delivering a newborn
baby in an ambulance to save both
mother and baby’s lives. © Zhian Org.

Hawrin accompanied the mother while she was being transported in the ambulance. On the way, the pain got worse and to save the mother and child’s lives, she needed to conduct a natural delivery inside the ambulance. 

“My heart was beating fast. I knew that these lives were at risk and I had no option but to save them. I was working against the clock, so I used the equipment available with me and I conducted the delivery,” she continued. 

“The mother was so scared and she kept begging me to bring her baby to life safely: Don’t let him die - don’t let my baby die, please. This could have gone wrong but I knew that woman was counting on me and I could not disappoint her,” she added. 

Hawrin safely delivered the newborn baby and the ambulance continued its way to the Erbil maternity hospital where mother and son received proper health care. 

“I was thrilled and overwhelmed by the feeling of accomplishment. I saved two lives who were in critical condition that day... A day I will forever remember,” she concluded. 

Hawrin created many good and inspiring memories during her service as a midwife, but her journey witnessed sad and unfortunate stories too. Once, Hawrin received a pregnant woman with pain, after examination, they realised that the baby had died inside the mother’s womb. After delivery, she accompanied the mother to Erbil Maternal Hospital for further examination and treatment. 

Hawrin was relieved that the mother was safe and alive, but for her not being able to see the child born alive was a tragedy. It was a turning point in Hawrin’s perception of her job.  She accepted that her job could bring happy moments and also break her heart on the same day.  Harwin has continued her passion to save the lives of mothers and newborns. 

What is the biggest challenge you faced during COVID-19?

“The biggest challenge was to convince women and girls to wear masks and comply with the COVID-19 preventative measures. We were determined to help them stay safe and healthy. My colleagues and I went door-to-door visiting families and explaining to them why it was necessary to abide by the preventive measures. We showed families how to wash hands properly and how to wear masks that cover both nose and mouth.”

The reproductive health facility in Khazir camp is funded by Canada as well as Sweden, through Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency.