Information for Missionaries

This page seeks to provide some answers to a few practical questions that field missionaries or mission organizations might have about accepting a midwife.

What exactly is CMI about?

Our purpose is twofold;

  1. To mobilize Christian midwives to serve on the mission field
  2. To network with mission organizations and ask them to prayerfully consider placing Christian midwives on their cross cultural teams

How can midwives better enhance our mission team?

A Christian midwife’s service is hands-on, relevant, practical, and deeply relational. We believe these traits can be a valuable asset to any cross cultural missions team. She is passionate about serving women in need, and her skills and compassion-based service allows for a natural favor to be gained with the patient’s family including the husband. This opens the door for other members of the mission team to share the gospel, begin home bible studies with those who are receptive and eventually see churches planted through the patient’s web of relationships.

Furthermore, a midwife can provide an entry point into areas where typical missionaries may not be able to gain access due to some restrictions. There are various ways in which to secure a type of ‘beachhead’ entry point for access. For example, a Christian midwife can partner with local medical people to volunteer to either work in an established clinic or set up a small clinic. The midwife seeks to honor and respect the national midwives and doctors and places herself under their covering. She can also hire national midwives to help her staff the clinic. Generally, most developing world countries have a maternal mortality problem they are trying to address as they work toward WHO’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Subsequently, these countries are favorable to receiving western midwives.

Does the integration of a midwife onto our team require us to build a clinic?

Not at all. There are varying issues to consider when establishing a maternal healthcare program. For example, a midwife might start with home births if the local government allows for such. Generally, if the distance from the targeted rural area is quite far to the nearest urban clinic the government will probably be very open to home births. Demographics also need to be considered. If the population is large even in a rural area, then a midwife will eventually find that offering home births is not practical. Subsequently, setting up a small clinic needs to be considered, but it doesn’t need to be cost prohibitive. For example, renting a small 2 or 3 bedroom house is entirely adequate.

How can I partner with Christian Midwife Initiative (CMI)?

We would love to sit down with you in person and share about our experiences using midwives on the mission field. We believe in partnering and networking. We value and respect the experience and expertise that mission organizations have. We are proficient in training Christian midwives to serve as missionaries, and we hope to get them integrated into other organizations to help advance missions work.

Are the midwives credentialed?

Generally, we require that any midwife considered for placement on a mission team is a legally licensed and certified midwife having graduated from an accredited school. She enters the field fully competent, skilled and trained to manage any labor and delivery situation.

Are the midwives formal members of CMI?

Not necessarily. We are not a mission sending agency. Rather, our purpose is to help connect Christian midwives with other mission organizations.

Does the midwife candidate need to formally join our team?

We desire to seek what is best for all parties involved on a case-by-case basis. The midwife candidate can either work through CMI and be seconded or assigned to your mission, or she can formally join your respective organization. The intent is for the partnership to be mutually beneficial.

If seconded to your organization, CMI has the ability to process the donations of the midwife candidate since we are a 501c3 charitable organization. Once assigned, however, the midwife falls under the authority and leadership of the organization and is guided by their respective policies and guidelines.

What are my responsibilities incorporating a midwife as part of our team?

To provide appropriate member care and to integrate her into your mission strategy

Can CMI provide us with assistance to set up a clinic or establish a maternal healthcare program?

Absolutely. Although we’re unable to provide financial capital to construct a clinic we are able to freely share everything we use in our clinical facility; medical chart templates, HIS (Hospital Information System) computer programs, admin forms, policies, protocols, procedures, etc. Everything we have can be shared with the midwife. We can also provide advice and recommendations on how to set up a new clinic.

What about cultural sensitivity? Are the midwives willing to respect the local practices and government health guidelines?

Its important for us to stress that we place a high value on cultural sensitivity. Although our western midwives are licensed and highly skilled, we are very careful to respect and honor the national midwives and respective government health agencies. We seek to be fully compliant with their policies and guidelines and we desire to work with national medical personnel. In short – we are not there to do our own thing. CMI missionaries are servants at heart, and they expect the culture after having been trained cross culturally in our program.

You talk about using a Christian midwife as a strategy for church planting. Does CMI have experience in church planting?

CMI’s founder has helped train and equip 10,000 pastors and lay leaders how to plant churches. We have a specific step-by-step strategy that we’re happy to share with you. Also, the midwife graduates of our midwifery program have been given a crash course on how to plant churches using a proven strategy used all over the world that God continues to bless.

Do CMI midwives have any overseas mission experience?

Yes, most of our midwives have served at least two years on the mission field where they were trained within a cross cultural environment.

How are the midwives funded? Do they expect to be paid?

Midwife candidates seek donations from various sources the same way a missionary raises financial support.

How much money does the midwife need to raise?

The amount of money needed to be raised is based on your respective organization’s requirements.

Generally, we try to field our midwives as soon as possible. Some organizations require their mission candidates to raise significant amounts of money that may take time and lots of itinerating. We are respectful of that, but we might seek ways in which our midwives might raise a less amount by looking at other options. For example, if the midwife waives the money required by your mission to be set aside for a furlough fund, or retirement, or if we can find lower options for healthcare coverage funds then we’d like to discuss it with you.

How long is a midwife willing to serve?

We have midwives who are willing to serve short term (6 months – 2 years) or long term.

For additional questions or to connect with CMI in order to integrate midwives into your mission strategy, see the Connect page.