New moms need community
“The support, the friendships – this community was mom-friendly and supported me through every new experience and concern.”
Shamika Alexander believes in Mama Sana Vibrant Woman. She is the Programs Director for the organization, but she first connected with Mama Sana when she was pregnant and recalls “stepping into a community that offered me – a woman of color – a safe place,” she said. “The support, the friendships – this community was mom-friendly and supported me through every new experience and concern.”
Programs Director, Mama Sana Vibrant Woman
Mama Sana provides pregnancy, birth, and postpartum support to Black and Latina women in Austin. Trained doulas serve as birth companions who provide culturally respectful, one-on-one support for expectant and new mothers. They support mothers in all their needs – physical, emotional, and informational.
Birth companions assist with home visits prior to birth, during labor, and at six postpartum home visits.
Each birth companion works closely with two to three women at a time. Birth companions assist with home visits prior to birth, during labor, and at six postpartum home visits over a six-week period.
Mama Sana Birth Support Program Director, Trachell Trice explains, “The support provided by our birth companions is based upon mutual respect, open communication, and empowerment. We are here to support mothers’ choices during this life-changing experience.”
Birth Support Program Director, Mama Sana Vibrant Woman
Mama Sana’s culturally respectful approach to pregnancy and postpartum care works to help women of color overcome roadblocks they may have to a healthy pregnancy and fourth trimester. Roadblocks can include lack of trust in the healthcare system; transportation access to medical appointments; language barriers; isolating home environments that fuel depression and disengagement; and personal stressors including financial or relationship difficulties.
outcomes and empower mothers.
“For every woman experiencing any of these barriers, our outreach can be vital to successful outcomes,” Trice says. “We understand the stress that women of color experience during the fourth trimester of pregnancy. Our goal is to improve pregnancy outcomes and empower mothers to be active partners in their pre- and post-natal care.”
Funding from St. David’s Foundation Focus on the Fourth Women’s Health Initiative supports Mama Sana’s programs, including its postpartum support groups for new mothers. Sessions are led by veteran mothers who understand new moms’ concerns and questions. The connections made at these gatherings were priceless for Alexander, and for other moms, too. She said, “We’re re-establishing a village, together.”
Learn more about Mama Sana Vibrant Woman.