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Eradicating Fistula Forever

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You have helped restore health and dignity to over 70,000 Ethiopian women. Thank you.

While enormous progress has been made, more than 31,000 women in Ethiopia still live with an untreated obstetric fistula injury. And every year, another 1,000 new fistula cases will occur.

Through Project Zero we’ve made it our mission to bring this number down to zero, by focusing on identification, prevention, and education.

Join us as we roll out this life-changing project across the country and make Dr Catherine Hamlin’s vision of a Fistula-Free Ethiopia a reality. 

A Lifetime of Caring

A Lifetime of Caring
Dr Catherine Hamlin

Restoring Health and Dignity

At Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation, we are dedicated to restoring the health and dignity of women who have survived a horrendous – and preventable – childbirth injury: obstetric fistula.

65 years ago, Drs Catherine and Reg Hamlin, started their extraordinary journey to Ethiopia, providing a lifetime quest of world-best treatment for women who suffered from an obstetric fistula. An internal injury caused by a prolonged, unrelieved obstructed labour, which leaves women incontinent, humiliated and cut off from their communities.

With a healthcare network of over 550 Ethiopian staff servicing hospitals, a rehabilitation and reintegration centre, the Hamlin College of Midwives and over 90 Hamlin-supported midwifery clinics.

The Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation raises funds for Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia. We have one purpose and one purpose only: eradicating fistula. Forever.

Ensure future generations of Ethiopian women live free from obstetric fistula

Leave a gift in your Will to continue Catherine’s journey.

The Tragedy of Obstetric Fistula

Imagine you are in labour, giving birth at home with no medical support. You are praying things will go well. They don’t. After four long days of excruciating obstructed labour, you give birth to a stillborn baby. On top of this grief, you find yourself unable to control your own body waste. 

This is the tragic reality for too many Ethiopian women. Obstetric fistula is a nightmare.

Empowering Women

Nothing shows the impact of our work better than the stories of women who have had their dignity and life restored, thanks to the support.

See the impact of your support

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Ethiopian team members

Towards a fistula-free Ethiopia

The Hamlin Model of Care

Dr Catherine Hamlin had unending love for Ethiopia’s women. Based on her core values, the Hamlin Model of Care is grounded in a fundamental respect for every patient and a commitment to provide complete and compassionate care.

Treating Patients

An obstetric fistula can usually be repaired with a single life-changing surgery. The Hamlin clinical team is globally renowned for its fistula-repair treatment technique, training surgeons from all over the world.

Future Prevention

The key to a fistula-free Ethiopia, lies in preventative measures. The Hamlin College of Midwives trains and deploys midwives to work in remote areas of Ethiopia – preventing fistula injuries in the first place.

Rehabilitation

Fistula leaves physical and emotional scars. Surgical treatment at Hamlin is supplemented with physiotherapy and counselling to help recovering patients regain their physical and mental health.

The Hamlin Shop

Discover our gorgeous range of ethical gifts. When you make a purchase at the Hamlin Shop, you are supporting Fairtrade artisans and Ethiopian women with fistula.

Read our Hamlin Blog

Happy 100th Birthday, Catherine!

Our entire global Hamlin family acknowledged Dr Catherine Hamlin’s 100th birthday on On 24 January 2024.

23 January, 2024

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Why is prolapse different in Ethiopia?

Pelvic Organ Prolapse in Ethiopia is a very different condition to what women present with developed countries. Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia Medical Director, Dr Yeshineh Demerew explained the difference.

20 June, 2024

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Patient Identification: The first step to freedom

Tolera is a Hamlin Patient Identification Officer who helps to find women who are hidden with fistula injuries in remote areas of Ethiopia.

17 June, 2024

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A baby girl after fistula: Enku’s story

Enku suffered with an obstetric fistula and later returned to Hamlin’s Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital to have a child.

31 May, 2024

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A decade of suffering: Emama’s story

June marks the start of Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP) month, an opportunity to increase awareness about this common condition, and the treatment options available.

24 May, 2024

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International Day to End Obstetric Fistula 2024

On the International Day to Eradicate Obstetric Fistula, and every day, the Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation remains determined to build a fistula-free world for every woman.

9 May, 2024

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