Training midwives is a key action to improve maternal health and reduce infant mortality.
In Mali, the EU is funding a large training programme operated by a partnership between the Malian, the French and the Moroccan Red Cross.
As a result, in urban centres like Bamako, mothers tend to give birth in maternity wards with qualified midwives, instead of giving birth at home.
As part of this EU-sponsored programme, the Malian Red Cross also train health professionals and encourage them to go and work in rural areas.
Even in the suburbs of the capital Bamako, patients have benefited from such trainings, as nurses trained by the Red Cross now run small health centres.