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Friday, November 26, 2010

Join the Birth Trust!

Are you committed to changing maternity care?

At the 2010 MANA Conference in Nashville, FAM launched the Birth Trust. We have decided that YOU should choose who receives grants to advance midwifery and the gentle birth movement. The Birth Trust is a transparent fund  where its Birth Trustees vote on grant-making every year. Birth Trustees make a minimum contribution of $33 a month for one year in order to vote. 

We are advertising the Birth Trust to the readers of MotheringMidwifery Today, and we plan to reach out to doulas, childbirth educators, lactation consultants so that this effort is not limited to the financial resources of midwives alone. We must do this together.

For about a $1 a day, don't you want a say in the projects that promote midwifery policy, research, access, and public education? Make your voice heard! Join us!

If you become a Birth Trustee by 12/31, we will mail you a Birth Trust T-shirt! Include your size: M, L, XXL in the comment section. 


We have found nearly 100 Trustees, and are well on our way to our goal of 250 trustees for its first year. This would mean $100,000 to grant to midwifery causes. Midwives at the beginning and peak of their career, students, friends, and family have signed on for change in maternity care.

The midwifery movement has never lacked passion or ideas, merely the financial resources to enable them. Let's change that!

Please forward this email to those you know who are passionate about midwifery. If every one of you who subscribe to our newsletter became or found a Birth Trustee, we would have $336,000 to grant.

Our collective power to change is immense. Please join us!


Monday, November 22, 2010

Reasons not to kill yourself by Mari Collings

by Mari Collings ©

Because you deserve to live.
Because your life has value, whether or not you can see it,
Because it was not your fault,
Because you didn't choose to be battered and used,
Because life itself is precious, because they were and are wrong,
Because you are connected to each and every other ritual abuse survivor, and so your daily battle automatically gives others hope and strength.
Because you will feel better, eventually
Because each time you confront despair you get stronger .. you can't know now what you will ultimately be able to do with this new morsel of strength, what future battles you will be able to win,

Because if you die today you will never again feel love for another human being, or trust, or gratitude; because you will never again see kindness and compassion in another's eyes.

Because if you die today you will never again see sunlight pouring through the leaves of a tree, or a bird take flight, or feel the quality of light in winter,

Because the seconds do not cease their passing, because even if it feels like time has become an unbearably heavy stone, it has not, and you only have to endure,

Because you have already won .. you have known the cleverness and resiliency and courage and stubborn will to make it this far, and no one can take that away,

Because the will to live is not a cruel punishment, even if it feels like that at times: it is a priceless gift.

Because your inner children need you, they have no one else and their need is so great, and because they deserve more than anyone to be healed and comforted; they are true heroes against impossible odds.

Because you owe your inner children, they are the reason you are here. If you die today you will erase the meaning of their suffering and incredible endurance, and that is too great a loss,

Because you already have the skills to find your healing path; you have proven this over and over again,

Because we need more warriors against this evil,

Because we need survivors to offer testament against this horror and despair,

Because no one knows better than you the meaning of suffering, and agony deepens the heart,

Because you deserve the peace that will come after this battle is won, and it will be won, but only minute by minute .. we must learn to let go of the unconquerable,

Because we can all come together in later years to laugh in their faces; because we will be able to show them that even though they had all the power and strength and ruthless cunning, even though we were only helpless, innocent, dependent children, we will have beaten them at the game they so smugly thought they had mastered,

Because I am furious that we have to suffer the pain of another's evil and filth,

Because you too will one day feel fury,

Because it is critical that you survive.

© Mari Collings

Thursday, November 4, 2010

"Reframing Birth and Breastfeeding: Moving Forward"--Join us March 11-12, 2011, in Chapel Hill, NC, for this collaborative event!

Bulletin from the cause: Join the Coalition for Improving Maternity Services (CIMS) -

Go to Cause
Posted By: Denna Suko
To: Members in Join the Coalition for Improving Maternity Services (CIMS) -

"Reframing Birth and Breastfeeding: Moving Forward"--Join us March 11-12, 2011, in Chapel Hill, NC, for this collaborative event!

For nearly a decade, the CIMS Annual Mother-Friendly Childbirth Forum has been recognized for offering the most authoritative and up-to-date research information pertaining to the Ten Steps of Mother-Friendly maternity care. For our 2011 conference, we've teamed up with UNCG's Center for Women's Health and Wellness and UNC's Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute who for five years have presented their "Breastfeeding and Feminism Symposium," an exploration of opportunities to reposition breastfeeding as a valued part of women's (re)productive lives and rights.

This collaborative event, "Reframing Birth and Breastfeeding: Moving Forward," will be held March 11-12, 2011, at the Sheraton Hotel in Chapel Hill, NC. Online registration will open soon. Watch the CIMS website ( for details.

Confirmed speakers include:
• Eugene Declercq, PhD, MBA, Assistant Dean for Doctoral Education at Boston University School of Public Health, providing an update on national advances in improving maternity care.

• Susan M. Ludington, PhD, CNM, FAAN, Professor of Pediatric Nursing, Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing at Case Western University, presenting "Kangaroo Care for All and All for Kangaroo Care".

• Miriam H. Labbock, MD, MPH, FACPM, IBCLC, FABM, Director of the Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute, and Professor, Department of Maternal and Child Health at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

• Bettina Lauf Forbes, Co-founder and President of Best for Babes, in "Beating the Breastfeeding Booby Traps" will explore the cultural & institutional barriers that prevent moms from achieving their personal breastfeeding goals.

• Geradine Simkins, CNM, MSN, President and Interim Executive Director at Midwives Alliance of North America, presenting "What Really Matters: Using Midwives' Stories for Social Change".

• Robbie E. Davis-Floyd, PhD, Fellow, Society for Applied Anthropology, and Senior Research Fellow, Department of Anthropology at University of Texas Austin, presenting "The International MotherBaby Childbirth Initiative (IMBCI): Current Implementation Projects and Preliminary Results".

Additional hot topics to be covered:
• The new federal "MOMS for the 21st Century Act", and joining us will be Debbie Jessup, CNM, MS, MA, PhD(c), Health Legislative Specialist in the Office of Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-34)

• Consistent with Childbirth Connection's Transforming Maternity Care Partnership for Blueprint Implementation, providing examples of excellence in maternity care will be Warren Newton, MD, MPH, William B. Aycock Distinguished Professor and Chair UNC Dept. of Family Medicine and Executive Associate Dean for Medical Education at UNC School of Medicine, Michele Lauria, MD, MS, Professor Obstetrics & Gynecology and Radiology at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center and the Northern New England Perinatal Quality Improvement Network, and Morgan Martin, MHA, Project Coordinator at Michigan Health & Hospital Association along with Tami Michele, DO, Ob/Gyn representing the Keystone Center for Patient Safety & Quality.

Don't miss these pre-conference workshops on Thursday, March 10:
• "The Art of Mother-Friendly Labor Support for Nurses," featuring ICEA President Jeanette Schwartz, RNC, MA, ICCE, LCCE, CD, IAT, and Marilyn Hildreth, RN, ICCE, LCCE, FACCE, CD(ICEA,DONA). Seven contact hours.

• "HUG Your Baby", an innovative approach to helping parents understand their baby's body language in order to prevent and solve problems around a baby's eating, sleeping, crying, and parent-child attachment, presented by Jan Tedder, BSN, CS, FNP. Six contact hours.

Watch the CIMS website ( for additional program details and online registration as they are announced.