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A new, united and galvanized global effort to boost child and maternal health will be a central focus of the Muskoka Summit.

Several Canadian international development organizations have banded together to focus on cutting the number of children under five who die by two-thirds by 2015.

Representatives of some of Canada's largest international development organizations, including CARE, Save the Children, World Vision and UNICEF have come together to outline their hopes for the G8 Summit.

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Read their briefing here: Towards a G8 Initiative on Maternal, Newbown and Child Health

"Every year nine million women around the world watch as their children die from painful, preventable illnesses," the report states. "Hundreds of thousands more women die in childbirth because they lack access to dependable quality health care close to home. This initiative provides an opportunity to ensure significant and new investment can be directed to helping to end the suffering of millions of families around the world."

Representatives from Save the Children and CARE will be here live at 1 p.m. to discuss maternal health and the G8 Summit. Please join the discussion on the live chat window below once the event goes live.

Live chat



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Meet our guests

Janani Vijayaraghavan - Technical Advisor, Child Health and Nutrition, Save the Children

Raised in Zambia, Ms. Vijayaraghavan worked on health communication programs in Uganda in child health and HIV, Ms.Vijayaraghavan is Save the Children Canada's Technical Advisor for Child Health and Nutrition. She has a master's in public health and works on health programs that train community health workers to diagnose and treat childhood illnesses in rural communities in Malawi, Mozambique and Southern Sudan.

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She has also been actively engaged with various Canadian organizations in Canada as well partners around the world to ensure much needed action and commitments are made for mothers and children in this year's G8 Summit.

Teresa Chiesa - Health Specialist and Africa Program Manager for CARE

Teresa Chiesa has worked as a nurse in Sierra Leone and has worked with other organizations across Canada and around the world to advocate for a G8 agreement that will invest in saving the lives of millions of women, children and newborns in the world's most vulnerable communities.

A trained nurse with a masters degree in health management, economics and policy, Ms. Chiesa has worked on the frontlines of health care in some of the most vulnerable parts of Africa: Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Ethiopia and Zambia. She has introduced HIV voluntary counselling and testing to Tanzanian health centres and developed a social marketing program to spread information about HIV and AIDS. In Ethiopia she empowered refugees to get better access to health services.

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