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Nigeria Health Watch to host the Celebrating Womanhood Art Gala in its maiden edition of #HealthMeetsArt

Nigeria Health Watch is excited to announce that it will be hosting its maiden edition of the #HealthMeetsArt Gala themed ‘Celebrating Womanhood’, to recognize women in all their diversity, showcasing their strengths and resilience, whilst also creating a space for positive dialogue to highlight the important need to accelerate progress towards greater equality in Nigeria.

The gala will be a hybrid event with the opportunity to share in the experience and view the art pieces online, on Friday, October 8th, 2021. Interested participants and art lovers can register here to attend the event virtually while the physical attendance is strictly by invitation. The art gala is being organized with support from the National Gallery of Art and Female Artists Association of Nigeria (FEAAN) who have curated art pieces from selected female artists.

The Celebrating Womanhood Art Gala seeks to bring together stakeholders from diverse sectors to increase awareness and provide a forum for discussion on how we can break down the structural barriers that prevent women and girls from attaining their full potential. We critically want to highlight the inequities and obstacles women face when accessing healthcare.

Nigeria’s maternal mortality rate continues to be a public health concern. Data from the 2018 Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS) showed that maternal deaths in Nigeria account for 20% of global maternal deaths. The number of women who die while giving life in Nigeria calls for immediate attention and collaboration by all stakeholders (including the private sector, public agencies, civil society organisations, donors, and multinationals) in Nigeria’s health sector to improve current outcomes of women when they are giving birth.

Art is a unique form of expression that can combine both text and imagery. It has the ability to communicate ideas, share experiences and thoughts, stretching the imagination without relying solely on words. It is an outlet for human expression and a universal language that has the power to unify. This approach can be an effective means of creating awareness about maternal health issues. Furthermore, by creating awareness of these issues and portraying women from their position of strength and often resilience, we hope to generate greater mobilization of resources and engagement to ensure that gender issues are mainstreamed.

According to Vivianne Ihekweazu, Managing Director of Nigeria Health Watch, “As health advocates we need to inspire change, whether it is a change in thinking or a change in behaviour. This requires touching people on an emotional level and one of the ways we are seeking to do this, is through creative arts”

Ihekweazu also stated that “the goal of the Celebrating Womanhood Art Gala is to create greater awareness about maternal health issues, beyond the health sector. The number of Nigerian women who lose their lives while giving life remains of great concern and urgent solutions are needed to inspire positive change”.

Speaking on the #HealthMeetsArt gala partnership, Chinze Ojobo, Fellow of African Art & Culture stated that they are excited to partner with Nigeria Health Watch on this epic event. “FEAAN was established in 2001 and uses art to give voice to the voiceless, the vulnerable women and endangered girl child”.

Ojobo further emphasized that “our advocacy as female artists lie solely on social issues like gender rights and equality, gender based violence, maternal health issues and so on”.

Media partnership for the #HealthMeetsArt gala include Pulse Media, Nigeria Info and Silverbird Communications. The gala is being organized with the support of MSD for Mothers through its global initiative to help create a world where no woman has to die while giving life.

About Nigeria Health Watch

Nigeria Health Watch uses evidence-based advocacy and communication to influence health policy and seek better access to healthcare in Nigeria. We seek to amplify some of the great work happening in the health sector, challenge the bad, and create a space for positive ideas and action. Through our various platforms, Nigeria Health Watch is a trusted source that provides informed commentary and in-depth analysis of health issues in Nigeria, always in good conscience. Learn more at www.nigeriahealthwatch.com

For more information about the #HealthMeeetsArt Gala please contact Uche Nwagboso Phone number: +234 814 137 6913 Email: uche@nigeriahealthwatch.com

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