October 21, 2015
Bethlehem Mayor: Holy Family Hospital is “a place where women feel dignity”
Bethlehem today is a small town of about 30,000 residents located seven miles outside Jerusalem. The West Bank Separation Wall, built in 2002, cut Bethlehem off from Jerusalem, and cut the town’s quality of life along with it. Despite the considerable socioeconomic and political struggles now spread wide throughout the region, Bethlehem’s mayor, Vera Baboun, works hard to unite citizens and revive the local economy. One of her biggest priorities as mayor has been providing women in Bethlehem with equal opportunities for employment and professional advancement. It should therefore come as no surprise that throughout her term as mayor, Baboun has commended Holy Family Hospital, not only for its provision of critical maternity and neonatal care, but also for its sizable economic impact in the community. The Hospital is one of the largest employers of women in the region, and, as it provides work for work both Christians and Muslims, also serves to promote peace among residents.
But it is the Hospital’s profound care for mothers and infants that Mayor Baboun cares about most deeply. She delivered her two youngest children there, saying, “Giving birth is the time when a woman feels the most vulnerable. During this incredibly vulnerable time, Holy Family Hospital provides a clean and safe space for women. It is a place where women feel dignity.”
This year over 3,500 women will deliver at Holy Family Hospital, many traveling over extremely long distances to receive its state-of-the-art care. For women living in remote desert villages and U.N. refugee camps – approximately 25% of Holy Family Hospital’s overall patient base – the Hospital’s Mobile Outreach Clinic is the only option for comprehensive prenatal care. The Mobile Clinic, which operates out of a van specially outfitted with the required medical equipment, is the only one of its kind in Bethlehem region. Because of the Hospital’s commitment to meeting the needs of families in these isolated communities, Mayor Baboun named Holy Family Hospital “one of the most important and significant health projects in the entire region, not only in Bethlehem.”
Mayor Baboun concluded, saying “Holy Family Hospital makes sure that women are treated so well. Thank you.” After over a hundred-year presence in Bethlehem, its clinicians and staff are still looking for new ways to serve women and children in need. We are deeply grateful to have the continued support of this vibrant community in the Holy Land.
You, too, can support Holy Family Hospital and its wide-ranging services in Bethlehem. Consider making a donation to Holy Family Hospital of Bethlehem Foundation to provide indispensable healthcare and employment to the families of Bethlehem.