PRECIOUS CARGO-the birth of an important project

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Just recently I was contacted by Ron Common, asking me to help with an exciting fundraising project, bringing student midwives and midwives from around the world together. Ron told me:

‘Midwives around the world shape the beginnings of a person’s life and it’s a sad fact that a great many people globally still do not have easy access to a trained health professional at crucial times in life, such as during pregnancy, birth and the early years of childhood.
This collaborative project aims to send a beautifully decorated scroll around the world to collect as many signatures as possible. The scroll is one of the oldest forms of written communication in history, having played a major role in shaping our world today, so there is no better way to celebrate one of the oldest professions in the world – midwifery!  The Precious Cargo project and scroll’s aim is to raise awareness of access to healthcare for all in promotion of maternal and child health, alongside raising funds to help Motorcycle Outreach expand its mission to improve health care delivery to remote areas of developing countries.’Motorcycle Outreach’s current project and its wonderful outcomes can be seen on their WEBSITE
In order for our project to be a huge success, we are looking for as many members/student midwives/midwives to get involved and support us on this project.


There are 3 main ways to get involved:
-Raising awareness of the project within your local hospitals, clinical centres and universities and organise to get as many signatures on the scroll as possible within your local area/maternity unit
– Organising fundraising events and/or sponsorship (to raise funds and awareness of the project)
– Signing the scroll when it travels to your area and make a donation
We are also looking for a number of volunteers to act as regional coordinators to help us manage the project. We feel that this is a valuable opportunity to help improve maternity services worldwide, alongside undertaking a unique opportunity which may, in turn, be used within supporting statements and PREP requirements in the future!
The UK section of the scroll will be 20 meters long – enough for 10,000 signatures.
Its borders will be decorated with colourful drawings by patients of the Children’s Hospital and interspersed with messages from midwives about “what being a midwife means to them. The scroll’s journey will commence in the UK with a tour of approximately  55 hospitals around England, Scotland & Wales.  (Students attend 196 centres but time doesn’t allow us to visit them all).Selection of the hospitals to be visited will be based on the location of the volunteers engaged in the project. (A schedule of each hospital visit will be published in advance).The start point will be Hampton Court Palace, London on 7th September 2013 and last for up to 55 days (allowing 1 day for each hospital being visited).In the weeks leading up to each hospital visit, students/midwives are encouraged to raise awareness of the project at their hospital and, if possible, undertake local fund-raising events.

A team of motorcyclists will courier the scroll from hospital to hospital on a daily basis.

Drop off and collection times will be published in advance.

For each delivery, a “lead” rider will hand the scroll to a student midwife on arrival at the hospital for safe-keeping and to facilitate the signing of the scroll during its 24 hour visit.

We are in the process of creating a dedicated website for the project that will included a “scroll tracker”, blog pages, space for photos etc.

The UK leg of the tour is being used as a “pilot” for the Rest of the World tour.

If the UK leg is successful then it is anticipated that the process will be replicated in at least 40 other countries around the world – so we REALLY want to give it our best shot. The UK will be the “standard-bearer” for other countries to follow.To add a bit of extra spice , an application has been made to the Guinness World Records for a world record attempt at “the most signatures on an item” .We’re very passionate about this project and we hope to get as many people involved who care about midwifery as possible.
For more information either visit the SMNET website or contact one of the project managers:
Ron Common email:
Kelly Silk email:
Ron said: I hope that student midwives and midwives in the UK see that this is a great opportunity for them to make a direct and personal contribution to improve the delivery of mother and child health care around the world, and inspire an international initiative that will eventually impact hundreds of thousands of people.  The scroll is the thread that links us all together and will become the symbol of our united mission.
Hope you can get involved, I certainly will!
By sheenabyrom

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