VHP was founded by Margaret “Migs” Muldrow, MD. As a young girl, she lived in southwestern Ethiopia, where her parents worked to establish educational, agricultural, and medical programs. Migs spent much of her childhood helping in a small medical clinic, an experience that ultimately led her to a career in medicine.
Years later, when she returned to Ethiopia, Migs discovered that as many as one in 10 women still die in childbirth, and 30 to 40% of those who survive are left with severe gynecologic problems. Nothing had changed in all of her time away.
Community leaders approached Migs with a request: partner with them to improve maternal health. With her knowledge of the area’s language, culture, and medical needs, she was in a unique position to create an organization that could help tackle the challenges faced by women living in some of the poorest and most remote parts of rural Ethiopia.
A small board was formed and the Village Health Partnership was launched. Each year, VHP board members and other volunteers travel to Ethiopia to work with community leaders to review progress, perform needs assessments, and define future programs and funding priorities. In the United States, board members and volunteers have logged countless hours working to raise money to support community-based efforts for safer motherhood in Ethiopia.