Experts join TV war correspondent to focus on women in danger

A North-east audience will have the chance this weekend to hear from pioneering foreign correspondent Kate Adie, along with international humanitarian experts working to tackle the special dangers faced by women across the developing world.

A special extended event at this weekend’s University of Aberdeen May Festival will feature ground-breaking BBC war correspondent Kate Adie talking about a career reporting from the front line of conflicts and international hotspots that defined the last four decades.

BBC Scotland correspondent Fiona Stalker will chair the event to take place on Sunday (May 11) at 3pm in the Arts Lecture Theatre of the King’s College campus.

The theme of women in dangerous situations will continue as Kate and Fiona are joined by a panel of leading international figures in public health whose work includes improving the lives of women in troubled areas of the world, and in particular to reduce the number of deaths in childbirth which despite some progress in recent years still remain unacceptably high.

The event is being supported by Immpact, the University of Aberdeen international research project to promote safe motherhood in the developing world.

The experts taking time out from a busy visit to the UK to discuss these issues with the Aberdeen public are:

  • Dr Kaosar Afsana, Director of Health, Nutrition and Population and Professor in James P Grant School of Public Health, BRAC University, Bangladesh
  • Ann Phoya Former Head of Planning and Director of Nursing at the Ministry of Health in Malawi, working on a Scottish Government funded project to develop a sustainable model for community midwifery services in Malawi.
  • Professor Dileep Mavalankar, Director of the Indian Institute of Public Health, Gandinagar, international consultant to WHO, UNICEF and the World Bank and a member of numerous scientific committees.

Dr Julia Hussein, scientific director of Immpact, will also join the panel. Dr Hussein trained as an obstetrician and gynaecologist before working in Afghanistan and eventually implementing maternal mortality programmes for UNICEF and the UK government in Asia and sub Saharan Africa.

A new exhibition of photographs taken by local photographer Donna Murray will be on display in the Arts foyer. Donna was commissioned by Immpact to help raise awareness of maternal health issues to give a visual identity to its research. A series of images taken in urban and rural maternity units will be on display over the weekend giving audiences a glimpse of maternity care in Malawi.

While in Scotland, the visiting group will take the opportunity to visit urban and rural community health services and hospital clinics, and meet clinicians and public health practitioners. They will also attend a seminar on international development at Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh, to share experiences from Malawi, India and Bangladesh. Humza Yousaf, Minister for External Affairs and International Development in the Scottish Government, will join the panel discussion.

Tickets are still available for many May Festival events by booking online at or by calling Aberdeen Box Office on 01224 641122.