How supermodel Christy Turlington Burns aims to make childbirth safer all over the world

Christy Turlington Burns is one of the most successful models of all time.

She’s graced nearly 1,000 magazine covers, been the face of countless brands and cemented her ‘90s icon status when she appeared in George Michael’s music video for “Freedom.”

This year alone, Turlington, 48, has modeled on the covers of French Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar and in ad campaigns for Valentino and Tiffany.

“I learned all of the things I learned throughout that career because of the things that happened on the side, the trips and the places I got to visit and the relationships I got to form because of it,” Turlington told ABC News’ “Nightline.” “But the job itself — it’s not very stimulating.”

Victoria Thompson/ABC News
Christy Turlington Burns with baby Jordan who is visiting F.A.M.E. (Foundation for African Medicine and Education) medical hospital for a check-up.

So at the height of her career, Turlington left modeling, pursued her masters in public health at Columbia University and directed a documentary. She said she ultimately found her calling as the founder and CEO of Every Mother Counts.

Since 2012, Every Mother Counts has provided over $4 million in grants, bringing essential pregnancy, birth and post-partum healthcare to mothers in eight countries, including Tanzania, Bangladesh, Haiti, Syria and the United States.

“It just became clear to me at a certain point that just talking is not going to do it alone,” Turlington said. “I need to educate people about it. But then we also need to invest because every two minutes [a mother] is dying.”

Courtesy Every Mother Counts
Every Mother Counts helps to make childbirth safer in 8 countries, including Tanzania.

Turlington was inspired by events in her own life, beginning with the traumatic birth of her daughter Grace 13 years ago, when she suffered a post-partum hemorrhage.

“The experience was scary and painful,” Turlington said. But, she was grateful to have professionals on hand who were properly equipped to…

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