This is our family operated, Non-Profit Organization, Mercy In Action

which focuses on the crisis in Maternal/Newborn/Child health care worldwide. We have been establishing and funding free birth centers for poor families in the Philippines since 1992, and to date more than 12,000 babies have been delivered free of charge for the poorest of the poor in Mercy In Action's Birth Centers, and literally tens of thousands of lives have been helped and healed in the medical outreaches

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Entries in Penwell (3)


Korean Air Delivery: The dramatic retelling

It's always been a dream of mine to watch a dramatized reenactment of my life on Japanese television....well, my mom beat me to it. 

As many of you already know, Vicki was in the right place at the right time last November, as a woman traveling from LAX to Seoul went into active labor upon her same flight. Very fortunate for the mother (and all the other anxious airline travelers) that a midwife of 30 years experience and a Masters of Science in Midwifery happened to be sitting close enough to observe the classic labor signs, even as the mother herself was in denial as to what was beginning. Vic took charge of the situation by moving the mother to a secluded area of the plane and calmed everyone down; especially the mother. She prepared for possible complications as best she could, and helped facilitate this mother's ability to give birth - 37,000 feet above the ground.

The whole store is published here. All ended well, with a healthy and happy mother and baby. The news of the Mid-Pacific birth spread, and pretty soon Vic was contacted by a Japanese television program who wanted to interview her about the event. We all thought it was a news program until we watched the finished product; in actually, it is MUCH more interesting than some boring news clip. Prepare yourself for 15 minutes of awkward awesomeness - via Japanese gameshow!

 If Anyone is able to translate this, we would be greatly appreciative! for the real story. Here is the short YouTube clip of the actual birth - Baby Born at 37,000 ft


Safe Motherhood Initiative: Ian's Speech for COMM101

I had to give my second speech for my online classes, but haflway through the semester we moved from Boise to the Philippines to join the team that has already been hard at work to build our clinic....hmm, this provided me the opportunity to combine tasks. I especially love the bleating goat in the background.



Mercy In Action in Olongapo City

Mt. Pinatubo erupted 20 years ago and along with the devastating physical effects, the social ramifications of that volcanic explosion effect us still today.

Last year, Mercy In Action started looking and praying for the right location to start our next free maternity center. Ian & Vicki took two weeks to travel the islands by scooter (only tossing each other from the bike once), to scout out possible locations. There were a number of considerations that had to be met for our new location, including the mentality of the local people and government, the feasibility of moving our clinical staff and our own families, and the all the practicalities of setting up a home base for this international-scaled operation we call Mercy In Action. But the most important factor, as it has ALWAYS been, is someplace where mothers and babies are lacking compassionate care at a crucial moment between possible life or death - Childbirth. 

Herein comes Olongapo. When Mt. Pinatubo blew, the Aeta tribal people were scattered from their original homeland and become "internally displaced peoples". They are resettled here, on the outskirts of Olongapo City, and twenty years later they are still the outsiders - the homeless. This sad fact is reflective in their maternal / newborn outcomes. We recently conducted a household health survey of the Aeta people and discovered that 82% of the women give birth without the presence of a skilled birth attendant. On average, one child per household has died (not every family has suffered this tragic loss, but since some families have lost multiple children, it evens out to 1:1 child death per family), and everyone knows a mother who has died giving birth...friends, sisters, wives, lost while bringing life into this world.

World Health Organization, along with every credible global health authority, state LOUDLY that MORE skilled birth attendants are needed to reduce these unnecessary mortalities. This is what we do...We are conducting weekly prenatals,

postpartum and newborn home visits, and will be opening our birth center soon to meet the need of compassionate and safe assistance during childbirth.


Check out more pictures on our progress in the Aeta Resettlement Village, Iram. 



Iram Resettlement Village Project