In the Philippines, a couple is putting 10 years of lessons learned from participating in USAID projects with Chemonics into practice. Marie Rose and Jacinto embody how development works by sustainably improving maternal and childcare in their community for generations to come.
Ten years ago, a chance encounter sparked a partnership that would create lasting ripple effects on the well-being of a small community in the Philippines. At the time, Marie Rose Victoriano was unaware that organizing a workshop would reunite her with her college classmate turned local midwife, Jacinto Managbanag. She had no way of knowing that this moment of reconnection would start a journey that would lead them to use their combined passion for healthcare to improve, strengthen, and empower their community — and would also begin their love story.
Marie Rose and Jacinto are now married, parents of two, and owners of a clinic serving about 200 patients a month. The clinic is a community staple, providing prenatal and post-partum care, family planning, newborn vaccinations, and delivering almost 30 babies per month. As midwives and community leaders of their 4,000 inhabitant barangay, or village, they are expanding access to affordable, sustainable health care in the province of Leyte, where the maternal mortality rate has significantly decreased from 106 deaths to 30 deaths per 100,000 live births over the past six years.
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