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11 Feb 2021

6 Reproductive Health Leaders To Follow For Black History Lessons Year-Round

By The DTI team

February marks the beginning of Black History Month—a month to celebrate and acknowledge the legacies of Black thought leadership.

And when it comes to reproductive health, much of the work we do today started with the profound contributions that Black reproductive advocates, revolutionaries and activists have made on doula and midwifery work.

So, as you learn alongside us this month, we’d like to amplify six organizations and thought leaders that drop Black history lessons year-round—some of which you may be familiar with through DTI’s partnerships or some of which may be new to you!

Follow their lead, support their work and continue developing a historically accurate and responsible lens around your doula practice.

1.) Doctor Midwife’s Birth Sanctuary

Dr. Stephanie Mitchell is a doctoral prepared, board-certified nurse midwife with a comprehensive background serving a diverse birthing community for the last 13 years (she’s also a former Born Into This speaker!). In 2021, she’s launching the first-ever free-standing birth center in Gainesville, Alabama. Keep up with her work with the center here. For regular lessons and conversations around Dr. Stephanie’s lens, we highly suggest tuning into her weekly Instagram Stories, Sunday Cervix, which go live on her social media platforms.

2.) SisterSong

SisterSong’s mission is to strengthen and amplify the collective voices of Indigenous women and Women of Color to achieve reproductive justice by eradicating reproductive oppression and securing human rights. As one of the founding thought leaders on Reproductive Justice as a concept, follow along with their programs and the development of the organization as they issue calls to action and requests for support.

3.) Sabia Wade, The Black Doula

Sabia Wade aka The Black Doula is the founder and CEO of Birthing Advocacy, an online doula training organization. Releasing free webinars and regularly sharing educational content around doula work and dismantling white supremacy in reproductive health, Sabia’s approach as an educator is much appreciated! (Sabia has also been a speaker at Born Into This.)

4.) Jennie Joseph’s Midwifery School, Commonsense Childbirth

Jennie Joseph, founder of the JJ Way and one of the birth work’s foundational thought leaders in patient-centered care, has recently opened her own midwifery school to train and mentor the next generation of midwives committed to eliminating racial disparities in birth outcomes. Follow her on Instagram to keep up with the policy changes, collaborations and thought leadership brings forward year-round.

5.) Decolonizing At The Root by M. Carmen Lane and Dr. Alicia Bonaparte

For the month of February, we’re releasing a free, digital recording of Decolonizing At The Root—a conversation between M. Carmen Lane and Dr. Alicia Bonaparte about settler colonialism and the mayhem of intersectionality within birth work. You can access that talk for free here. You can keep up with their work as individuals here and here.

6.) Re+birth Equity Alliance

This year, within DTI’s membership, we’ve introduced a free Implicit Bias training with Re+Birth Equity Alliance (you can find the discount code in your dashboard). Whether you’re a DTI member or not, follow along with Re+Birth Equity on Instagram to learn more about their framework and access some of the racial equity resources they release year-round.

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