About the Project


As her second child’s due date approaches, Eliza grows anxious as she is constantly reminded of the horrifying physical and emotional pain she experienced during her first childbirth. Worse, she must find a way to cover the nearly insurmountable cost of giving birth in the local hospital or take the risk of giving birth without care in her own home. Labor of Love follows Eliza’s antepartum journey and the hope provided to mothers in the Philippines by Mercy in Action.

Eliza Rests


Mercy in Action has worked across the Philippines for the last 20 years, establishing midwife clinics and providing workshops for midwives in training in order to combat the country’s high rate of childbirth mortality. The clinics provide free childbirth services including kind, evidence-based prenatal, labor and delivery, postpartum and newborn care, as well as vitamins, anti-hemorrhage drugs, and immunizations for poor malnourished women, resulting in a maternal and neonatal mortality rate 4-times better than the country of the Philippines.

Vicki checks patient


Vicki Penwell and her family lead midwife training workshops around the world.  By sharing the film with students, Labor of Love is a tool that shares the remarkable value of Mercy in Action’s work. The film will also be used online to raise more donor support and increase awareness about the life-saving work that can be accomplished through proper maternal healthcare.

Newborn Baby

Project Details

  •  Micro Documentary
  •  Mercy in Action
  •  Olongopo, Philippines
  •  July, 2013
  •  8 min. 20 sec.
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"Join the Lights told the story well and compassionately...you guys honored and blessed us all at Mercy In Action."
— Vicki Penwell, Founder