GRAPHIC NOVEL: Motherhood in Crisis, Sierra Leone


In the West African nation of Sierra Leone, one in 10 women die during childbirth. Healthcare systems are fragile – further strained by Ebola and now COVID-19 – and access to basic treatment is often limited.

The journeys that pregnant women take to reach healthcare provision can be long and traumatic. In this comic series, four women share their stories of hardship and survival in a country where falling pregnant means risking death.

READ CHAPTER 1: Birth in my village – Memunatu’s story
In Sierra Leone’s rural areas, far from hospital treatment, the majority of women and girls give birth at home. If complications arise the consequences can be life-altering.

READ CHAPTER 2: My stolen future – Heela’s story
For many school girls in Sierra Leone, pregnancy means the end of formal schooling and an uncertain future.

READ CHAPTER 3: The devil at my door – Kadiatu’s story
In Sierra Leone, trust in healthcare facilities is low and traditional medicine can provide a cheaper alternative. This can be deadly for mothers and their children.

READ CHAPTER 4: My punishment – Tetteh’s story
In Sierra Leone, laws are vague, poorly defined and disproportionately affect women. When Tetteh arrived in prison she was 3 months pregnant.