International Confederation of Midwives Congress

Toronto, 18-22 June 2017

About ICM Congress 2017

The 31st International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) Triennial Congress takes places in Toronto, Canada. The congress represents and works to strengthen professional associations of midwives throughout the world.

There are expected to be around 4,000 participants from 130 national Midwives Associations, representing 114 countries across every continent. Find out more at

WaterAid at ICM 

We are delighted to be participating in the ICM Congress as a Friends Sponsor and Exhibitor, as well as leading the organisation of a Plenary Partner Panel.

Last year ICM and WaterAid, together with the Commonwealth Nurses and Midwives Federation and the Healthcare Information For All network, launched our new Healthy Start campaign for health professionals calling for quality healthcare for all by 2030. Achieving the global goal of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) for everyone everywhere will be fundamental to this aim. But far too many midwives in low- and middle-income countries lack the most basic means to keep patients safe.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates:
  • 38% of healthcare facilities in low and middle income countries lack access to a basic water source
  • 19% do not have adequate sanitation
  • 35% do not have soap for handwashing.

Without WASH in hospitals, clinics and other health facilities, how can midwives, nurses and doctors deliver quality care?

If you are a midwife please join us at the ICM Congress this year and join these vital discussions to help transform healthcare services for mothers, newborn babies and midwives around the world.

Use the tabs below for relevant blogs and articles and key events at the ICM Congress.

Healthy Start

Healthy Start: the first month of life

Bringing a new life into the world should be a time of love and hope for mother and baby, wherever they happen to live. But, around the world, one in every 50 births leads to heartbreak for parents, as their precious newborn son or daughter will die before they are a month old. Download our report to learn more.

Aisha, Lugono, Tanzania.

Film: Aisha's story

Aisha, from Lugono in Tanzania, recently lost her newborn son to a suspected infection just five days after his birth.

Doris with her ten-month-old twins in Mlali, Tanzania.

Film: Doris's story

Doris talks about her personal experience of maternal health in Tanzania.

The Ultimate Pregnancy Test

Film: The Ultimate Pregnancy Test

For millions of women around the world, pregnancy is a time of fear and uncertainty, because delivering without access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene means a deadly risk of infection for them and their baby.

A baby is weighed at Linyangwa Health Centre, Kasungu, Malawi, September 2016.No longer business as usual – Deliver Life project
7 February 2017 | Abigail Nyaka

In Malawi pregnant women face one of the world’s highest maternal mortality rates. Abigail Nyaka, Programme Officer for Soapbox at WaterAid Malawi, describes the context of Deliver Life – WaterAid’s project to bridge the gap between government efforts and improved maternal and newborn health with improved access to water, sanitation and hygiene.

Date and time



How to register

Tuesday 20 June 
11am - 12.30pm 

Clean Water: The missing ingredient. Local, national and global perspectives on making water, sanitation and hygiene available at birth (WaterAid plenary hall partner panel)

How can Midwives be expected to deliver quality care without clean water? As a Midwife, you are devoted to the health of mothers and babies. Yet millions of Midwives lack the basics – clean water, toilets and enough soap. Join us as we show what midwives face every day, discuss the solutions, and the important role you can play in changing this.

RSVP to [email protected]

Throughout the congress WaterAid Exhibition Stand

Come and see us throughout the week at the WaterAid Exhibition Stand – Booth 1110 next to the central coffee/tea area. We’ll be discussing actions you can take, as a midwife or a midwives association, to help the campaign for quality healthcare for all by 2030.
You will need to be a registered participant at the congress. Register at Contact [email protected]