Carol’s Daughter Just Launched a Powerful Initiative to Support Black Maternal Health
Maternal mortality in the U.S. is at an all-time high, with 17.4 deaths per 100,000 births, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And these rates are even higher for Black womxn (37.3 deaths per 100,000 live births), who are three to four times more likely to die from childbirth or childbirth-related causes — a majority of which are considered preventable, BTW — than their white counterparts. To draw attention to the issue and help spark change, hair-care brand Carol's Daughter has partnered with the Mama Glow Foundation for a powerful multi-year campaign called Love Delivered.
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Officially launched earlier this month during Black Maternal Health Week (April 11-17), Love Delivered is the brainchild of Lisa Price, founder of Carol's Daughter, and Latham Thomas, founder of Mama Glow and its namesake nonprofit. The program is focused on raising awareness of the Black maternal health crisis in America as well as the importance of advocates and doulas to ensure Black womxn — and their babies — stay safe and healthy from the first trimester through the postpartum period. (Related: What Exactly Is a Doula and Should You Hire One?)
Over the course of three years, the campaign will provide online resources including information on local doula services for expectant families and tools for partners and supporters to help create a positive birth experience. It will also offer community-building events, self-care package deliveries, and scholarship opportunities for Mama Glow Professional Doula Training programs. You can view and sign up for Love Delivered's range of offerings by heading to the Mama Glow Foundation website, where, starting this July, you can also apply to be matched with a Loved Delivered doula depending on your current needs (i.e. pregnancy and labor support, postpartum support, virtual support).
"The movement for Black lives has to start before birth because there are forces working against us before we are born," Thomas, a master birth doula herself, said in a press release. "In addition to demanding systemic change, for us to truly make a difference, we need to empower birthing people along the childbearing continuum with resources, guidance, and advocacy tools to support their birth village and larger community. Birth is meant to be a joyful and transcendent experience, we have the opportunity to work together to restore safety, dignity, and strive towards equity in birth."
Price also understands the importance of creating a safe and healthy space during the birthing process firsthand. "I was blessed to have a doula who recognized my needs and spoke to me AND up for me in many ways," she shared in the press release. "The experience showed me the importance of advocacy because so many times Black women are not heard during such a crucial moment in their lives." (Related: 11 Ways Black Women Can Protect Their Mental Health During Pregnancy and Postpartum)
Now, she and Thomas have joined forces to help Black womxn feel in control during their own birth experiences — something that all moms-to-be deserve.
This story originally appeared on shape.com