National Black Maternal Health Week 2020 Concludes With Release of Podcast on Birthing While Black in the U.S.

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As Black Maternal Health Week comes to a close, the Black Mamas Matter Alliance is proud to announce the release of a docu-series on birthing while black

As Black Maternal Health Week comes to a close, the Black Mamas Matter Alliance is proud to announce the release of a docu-series on birthing while black, produced by the team at NATAL with BMMA as a thought-partner. Conceived by a team of Black creatives, the podcast will highlight stories about pregnancy, birthing, and postpartum care told by parents themselves. The docuseries also features the birthworkers, medical professionals, researchers, and advocates—many of whom are BMMA members—fighting daily for better care for Black birthing parents.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Black mothers in the United States are two to three times more likely than white mothers to die from pregnancy-related complications.

“While the data is becoming clearer, what is often missing in these change-making conversations is the perspective of parents and Black Mamas about their experiences,” said Angela Aina, BMMA Interim Executive Director. “These stories, like the ones in the NATAL podcast, are critical to understanding how to move forward, where there is opportunity for intervention, and what creative solutions people in communities are already coming up with on the ground.”

This year’s Black Maternal Health Week campaign is focused on the theme, “Centering Black Mamas: The Right to Live and Thrive.” While members of BMMA host digital events catered to their local communities, BMMA continues to uplift critical issues for Black Mamas including how COVID-19 is impacting black maternal health and the power of holistic midwifery care. The NATAL podcast complements the week’s activities by amplifying the voices of real parents to provide context for the maternal health crisis and insight into how Black families are navigating the realities of birthing while black.

“Of course, success stories exist, both interpersonal and political,” said Gabrielle Horton, an Executive Producer at NATAL. “As storytellers, we believe that people are their own experts and we hope this series creates space for Black parents to share the lessons learned within a supportive community while also providing audiences with tools to engage in the national conversation about Black perinatal care.”

Founded in 2016, the Black Mamas Matter Alliance (BMMA) is a national network of black women-led, birth and reproductive justice community-based organizations and multi-disciplinary professionals, working across the full-spectrum of maternal and reproductive health. BMMA operates at the national, state, and local levels to drive research, build power, and shift culture in an effort to improve Black maternal health, rights, and justice from a birth justice, reproductive justice, and human rights perspective.

BMMA’s mission is to create a social, political, and cultural environment where Black Mamas have the rights, respect, and resources to thrive throughout their reproductive lives. Learn more: http://www.blackmamasmatter.org

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