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Plan Canada welcomes Government of Canada funding announcement on maternal, newborn and child health

Investment must reach the most vulnerable women and children

TORONTO, May 29, 2014 – Plan Canada welcomes the Government of Canada’s renewed and deepened commitment to saving the lives of millions of mothers and children in some of the world’s poorest countries. Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s funding announcement for global maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) was made today as part of the Canadian government’s Saving Every Woman Every Child: Within Arm’s Reach Summit in Toronto. Plan Canada supports the Government’s deeply-held commitment to improving the health of the world’s mothers and children and is dedicated to building on the progress that has been made under the 2010 Muskoka Initiative.

“Canada’s decision to invest in and focus attention on Millennium Development Goals (MDG) 4 and 5 – reducing child mortality and improving maternal health, respectively – has proven to be a very wise one. We’ve seen important progress made for mothers and their children worldwide in the past four years,” says Rosemary McCarney, Plan Canada President and CEO. “Today’s announcement by the Government of Canada to sustain the current funding of $2.85 billion beyond 2015, and to increase their commitment by $650 million for a total of $3.5 billion over five years, is outstanding news.”

“Every year almost 293,000 women still die during pregnancy and childbirth, and 6.3 million children die before their fifth birthday. These deaths are largely preventable and we know how to stop them,” McCarney continues. “This renewed investment by the Canadian Government will enable us to build on the remarkable preliminary progress that’s been made, and support even more vulnerable women and children with life-saving care no matter where they live. Our sights are now set on reaching the hardest to reach, those who are marginalized not just in terms of geography, but also income, gender and social status.

As a member of the Canadian Network for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (CAN-MNCH), Plan welcomes the opportunity to work with our partners, with the Canadian Government, and with the global community to first achieve the minimum goals set out by MDG 4 and 5 as soon as possible, and then move beyond them to eliminate all preventable deaths of mothers and children.

Canada's leadership on MNCH is an important foundation for the major national level commitments we will need to make the post-2015 development agenda a success.

As an implementing partner of the Muskoka Initiative, Plan Canada has helped communities build clinics, train health care workers and invest in equipment and simple, life-saving interventions to save the lives of women and children around the world.

About Plan and the Because I am a Girl initiative

Founded in 1937, Plan is one of the world’s oldest and largest international development agencies, working in partnership with millions of people around the world to end global poverty. Not for profit, independent and inclusive of all faiths and cultures, Plan has only one agenda: to improve the lives of children. Because I am a Girl is Plan’s global initiative to end gender inequality, promote girls’ rights and lift millions of girls – and everyone around them – out of poverty. Visit and for more information.

Media contacts:

Dena Allen, Senior Media and Public Relations Manager, Plan Canada
T: 416 920 1654 ext 326 | C: 416 723 6340 |