In 2014, the IDP Foundation provided a seed grant to support the Mela Project. The mission of this project is to create a center of excellence in medical education, clinical training and research at Mekelle University in Ethiopia that can serve as a national and regional training center for Sub-Saharan Africa. The IDP Foundation is thrilled to support this sustainable effort!

Ethiopia has one of the highest maternal mortality rates (MMR) in the world. Every day, 70 women die as a consequence of pregnancy and childbirth. Furthermore, MMR is increasing; in 2005 in Ethiopia, MMR was 673 / 100,000 live births; in 2011, it was 676 / 100,000 live births. One key contributor to MMR is the lack of trained providers. Ethiopia has one of the lowest health workforce densities in the world – as much as four (4) times lower than in Sub-Saharan Africa (2005), putting Ethiopia at the bottom of a group of 57 countries the World Health Organization (WHO) deems do not have sufficient workforce densities to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

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