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Help finally arrives: Aster's story

“When I arrived back home I was ecstatic and entered the house kneeling and shouting with joy.” - Aster

Half a century ago, Aster gave birth to a stillborn baby boy. With no access to medical care her long, obstructed labor resulted in an obstetric fistula, a condition she has lived with ever since.

Despite her injury and incontinence, Aster continued to care for her husband and her home. She was never able to fall pregnant again. 

Aster 1500x1000 1 | Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation | Together we can eradicate obstetric fistula in Ethiopia.

Earlier this year, help finally arrived for Aster. Hamlin’s Project Zero team came to her village looking for women with untreated fistula injuries. Aster and her husband were sceptical. Her husband says, “I believed her condition to be incurable at this old age and I didn't want her to have empty hope.”

They reluctantly visited Hamlin’s Metu Fistula Hospital, where she received loving care and treatment for her injury. She has returned home feeling like a new person.

“They were like a family, very empathic. When I arrived back home I was ecstatic and entered the house kneeling and shouting with joy. I am very grateful. Now I am leading a happy life!” says Aster.


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All rights reserved 2023 Catherine Hamlin Foundation (R) (ABN58159647499)
Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation is fiscally sponsored by KBFUS (EIN582277856) and KBF Canada (RCO769784893RR0001)

Photography credits to Cameron Bloom, Nigel Brennan, Mary F. Calvert, Kate Geraghty, Amber Hooper, Joni Kabana, Johannes Remling and Martha Tadesse.

Patient names have been changed to protect the identities of those we help.