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There is a diverse and vibrant network of organisations in Scotland that provide active support to development initiatives in Malawi including several working to support and improve maternal and child health (MCH). However, it is not always the case that these organisations are aware of work carried out by each other.

To address this situation Professor Tracy Humphrey, Dean of the School of Health & Social Care at Edinburgh Napier University, invited all those Scottish organisations working in MCH in Malawi to a symposium on 8th November. The aim was to start a conversation about how to share learning and work more closely in the future. Presentations were given by the organisations represented providing a comprehensive introduction to the diversity of work already underway in Malawi, from work around cervical cancer and support to develop a National Quality Management Policy for the Malawian health sector, to  training in emergency obstetric care and on respectful care for midwives.

Following discussions on the level of appropriate coordination it was agreed by all that continued contact would be  of benefit and could lead to a more strategic approach. The two favoured suggestions for continued contact were to have an annual workshop and to increase online networking and sharing.

The symposium offered an excellent opportunity to hear about the work of others and connect with colleagues working in the field of MCH. We look forward to developing these connections further and working together to make a difference to MCH in Malawi.