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Giovanna Lauro

Giovanna Lauro is currently working as Maternal and Newborn Health Advocacy Advisor with Options’ core team, focusing on MamaYe's activities in Sierra Leone. Prior to this she worked at the United Nations Foundation as associate director in the women and population programme. She has also worked on issues of race and ethnicity at the London School of Economics, and researched harmful traditional practices at the University of Oxford - where she recently attained her doctoral degree despite her addiction to hosting dinner parties.

Her previous degrees include an MA in International Health Policy from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, and a BA in Political Science from the University of Bologna. These places introduced her to new people, big ideas and global friendships that helped shape the person she is today.

Born and raised in Italy, she has lived and worked in France, Ireland, Spain, Armenia, the US, and Portugal, and is happily confused as to her national identity. Giovanna is fluent in French and Spanish, has learnt basic Russian in order to survive in Central Asia, and is currently perfecting her Portuguese - which is completely unrelated to, but occasionally useful in dealing with, her current work.

MDRs: why we need a supportive legislation

The purpose of this policy briefing is to provide information on the importance of adopting a supportive legislative and policy framework for the effective implementation of maternal death reviews (MDRs) in Sierra Leone.

Traditional Birth Attendants in Sierra Leone

Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs) are very popular and influential in rural communities in Sierra Leone. Engaged in community-based non-delivery roles, this network of respected individuals has the potential to add value to any intervention targeting pregnant women and mothers of young babies, increasing use of safe clinics and coverage of maternal and newborn health interventions.