Why a World Birth Defects Day Movement?

The World Birth Defects Day (WBDD) movement seeks to move our collective efforts from simply raising awareness to mobilizing resources and commitment to improve birth defects surveillance, research, prevention and care.

Although started as an annual event in 2015, World Birth Defects Day has now become a movement. A WBDD movement is needed because continuous, active engagement of global, country, and region-based organizations is necessary to make significant improvements in birth defects prevention and care. 

This movement is not bound by time or geography – it’s global and ongoing!

What is the aim of the WBDD Movement?

The overarching aims of the WBDD Movement are:

  • Prevent birth defects
  • Improve care of all individuals with any birth defect and related disabilities
  • Increase knowledge of the burden and causes of birth defects through epidemiologic and basic research

Who should partner in this movement?

Anyone working to improve the health of individuals with birth defects, can join this movement. Here some examples:

  • Parents/patients associations
  • Academic institutions
  • Research institutes
  • Maternal-child health hospitals or services (even small or part of them), public or private
  • Epidemiology programs, including birth defects registries
  • Public health agencies
  • Ministries of health, research and innovation, and other governmental agencies
  • Not for profit organizations / nongovernmental organizations (NGO)
  • Foundations
  • International agencies (e.g., UNICEF, WHO)

How can you be involved in the WBDD Movement? 

The first priority is to raise the visibility of birth defects and disseminate what is known about how to prevent birth defects and how to improve health and quality of life of affected individuals. Wide dissemination of knowledge is just the first step. Next, birth defects prevention efforts need to be accelerated in all regions of the world so that many more babies are born healthy. For those living with birth defects, support is needed so they can reach optimal status of wellbeing.

How can you disseminate what is already known to raise awareness?

Although there are several strategies to disseminate evidence-based knowledge, one of the cheapest and most feasible ways is to use web resources: your organization’s website and social media.

  1. Create a website if your organization does not have one. Information on website is always easily available to the users.
  2. Use the WBDD logo on your website. The WBDD logo is available at https://www.worldbirthdefectsday.org/.
  3. Help increase the number of Partners in every Country/Region. Being part of a critical mass of Partners has many advantages, particularly when you want to increase your visibility and collaboration. Reach out to other potential Partners in your City/Region/Country and encourage them to join by applying
  4. Have a webpage dedicated to birth defects on your website. On that specific page, you can include your own informational resources on care and prevention of birth defects. Example templates:

Last, but the most important, ORGANIZE opportunities.

  1. These can be meetings of any size, workshops, conferences, training courses, to increase the knowledge on birth defects prevention and/or care.
  2. Target groups can include health professionals, parents-to-be (target of prevention of birth defects), parents of children with a birth defects, and individuals with a birth defect.

Being a Partner of WBDD Movement means that you are not alone. You are an important part of a larger community. We will work together to help answer each other’s questions and support each other. Our collective efforts will improve the lives and outcomes of individuals with birth defects. 

See the map of Partners of the WBDD Movement at https://www.worldbirthdefectsday.org/map/