World News‎ > ‎

Carla Bruni offered pregnancy kit at G8 summit

posted 25 May 2011, 13:17 by Sam Mbale   [ updated 25 May 2011, 13:19 ]

A children's charity offers French first lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy a kit to help her through her pregnancy and childbirth at the G8 summit in Deauville.

French first lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, whose unconfirmed pregnancy has set the celebrity press abuzz, has received a pregnancy and childbirth kit from a children's charity at the G8 summit of world leaders.

At the historical Villa Strassburger, activists from World Vision delivered a basket with vitamins for pregnant women, a safe childbirth kit and hygiene supplies. On Friday, Bruni will host first ladies of African nations attending the summit.

The basket also had sterilising alcohol, surgical gloves, a razor blade to cut the umbilical cord and baby care products, many products which the charity say are not available to all women in the developing world.

The French presidential palace has not confirmed Bruni's pregnancy, but last week President Nicolas Sarkozy's father told a German newspaper that Bruni is expecting a child.

Talk has swirled in France that the former supermodel is pregnant ever since she clutched a shawl to her stomach during an interview in early May and fended off inquiries with the words "my lips are sealed to protect something...".

Geraldine Ryerson-Cruz, the International News Manager from World Vision U.S, said her charity fights to make sure that all the world's children have the same chance of survival that the French first baby would have, noting that Carla Bruni-Sarkozy is 150 times more likely to survive pregnancy and childbirth than a woman in former French colony Chad.

She added that Bruni's baby is 52 times more likely to survive till the age of five than a baby in Chad, which has one of the worst child mortality records in the world.

Sarkozy hosts the leaders of the world's eight richest countries at ritzy seaside resort town Deauville on Thursday and Friday. Several North African and sub-saharan African heads of state will also attend the meeting.

CEO of World Vision France, Maria Coulonb, said that through the gift, they wanted to deliver a message to the first lady.

"We know that she is concerned about the health of mothers and children and so we want to deliver a message to the G8 countries to respect the commitments concerning the health of mothers and children so that they spend 40 per cent of their health budgets to fund measures involving them. We think this will reduce the death of some eight million children by two thirds."

The reduction of child mortality has been a major theme at G8 meetings for several years and at the 2010 summit in Muskoka, Canada, G8 countries committed to mobilising $5 billion by 2015 to improve maternal, newborn and child health.

Ryerson-Cruz said that World Vision estimates that mainly thanks to G8 initiatives of the past years the number of preventable deaths of children globally has fallen by about 4 million to about 8.1 million in 2010, 12.4 million in 1990.

Support for cost-effective interventions reaching households could dramatically extend those gains, she added.

"The G8 leaders are meeting this week here in Deauville and we want them to remember that they are pregnant with promises for helping the developing world particularly mothers and children to survive and lead healthy lives through the assistance that they have already promised. We want to remind them to deliver on them," she said.