Haiti: Nicole Magloire

I cannot imagine life without commitment to a cause.”

— Nicole Magloire

Graduate of the Puerto Príncipe Medical Faculty in Haiti, doctor Nicole Magloire has dedicated her life to women's health. In the 1960s, she was committed to the opposition against the dictatorship of Duvalier. Since then, she has been involved in the fight for women's sexual and reproductive rights and, aside that, for the support of women victims of domestic and political violence.

After having completed her studies in a very traditional environment, the time came for Nicole to decide on a professional specialty. Her nature, along with her interest in politics and social problems, prompted her choice. “My professional vocation was born thanks to a combination of circumstances that led me from a vague wish to be socially useful to a commitment to Haiti, through the practice of medicine and the participation in the fight for democracy.” Her first professional practice put her into contact with peasant women, who are known for not only carrying the country on their heads (in their baskets full of produce for sale), but also for carrying a large part of the national economy on their shoulders. “I discovered my vocation to be a gynecologist during my social service in a remote region of Haiti. That was where I really discovered my country and where I saw that I could be useful in the field of women's health.” Since that time, all of Nicole's activities have been organized around this fundamental concern for securing a healthy life for women. Besides her practice as a gynecologist, she has been a permanent adviser on women's health for many Haitian organizations working to promote and defend women's rights. After the state military coup of 1991, she took care of the women victims of political violence. Meanwhile, she also continued her educational work, writing didactic materials and working on a number of different projects. “Nowadays, I work in a private clinic, in the Ministry of Women's Condition and Women's Rights and also with women's organizations. In the present moment, my particular field of action is in the fight for the support of women victims of domestic and political violence.”