10 Organizations That Support Black Moms and Their Families
The glaring disparities in Black maternal healthcare underscore the deep-rooted systemic racism in this country. According to the National Institutes of Health, non-Hispanic Black women are three to four times more likely to die from pregnancy-related causes than white women. This is one of the highest maternal mortality rates among industrialized countries—and what’s worse is that many of these fatalities are preventable.
These racial biases persist into infant healthcare. A 2020 study found that the mortality rate for Black newborns is up to 58 percent higher when they’re in delivered by and in the care of white doctors rather than Black doctors.
Many organizations are taking action against the staggering statistics and working to support Black mothers and their families. While many—like the Black Mamas Matter Alliance, National Birth Equity Collaborative and US House of Representatives’ Black Maternal Health Caucus—are advocating on a federal level for expanded research and policy amendments, other groups are working to bring care directly to Black moms when they need it. Keep reading to learn more about these organizations, the services they offer and how they’re hoping to inspire change.
Based in New Orleans, Sista Midwife Productions provides education, training and consultation for birth workers to eliminate disparities in prenatal care. The group provides doula training to increase the number of Black birth workers communities have access to. Plus, it hosts workshops and seminars to teach Black families about what to expect during childbirth, as well as their rights and options. They even offer a Sister Midwife Directory to connect families with local Black providers.
Check out Sista Midwife Productions
Love Delivered is a partnership between two entrepreneurs already striving to better Black women’s experiences: Lisa Price, founder of Carol’s Daughter and Latham Thomas, founder of Mama Glow. The duo teamed up in 2021 to help increase access to doulas for Black birthing people, as well as bridge the financial gap to help people afford these often costly services. Love Delivered also offers events and resources to help teach more people about birth equity and how to help advocate for better Black maternal healthcare.
Check out Love Delivered
Irth app is committed to removing any bias from the birthing experience. (It’s why they dropped the “B” in birth!) Kimberly Seales Allen created the app shortly after a disrespectful prenatal appointment at one the best hospitals in New York City. “I was treated like an unwed Black woman with basic insurance,” she writes on the Irth App website. To spark change, Allen created a platform that allows Black and brown families to review the prenatal, birthing, postpartum and pediatric care they receive. The goal? To help warn other BIPOC families about providers with implicit bias. It’s a platform made by and for people of color looking for doctors and hospitals that will prove impeccable care without any racism. Bonus: The data helps the app push for meaningful change within the healthcare system.
Check out Irth App
This national non-profit works to combat the effects of structural racism on maternal and infant health outcomes. NAABB provides guides for Black families looking for more statistics on Black birth, as well as resources on where to find trusted birthing professionals, such as midwives. The organization also helps these birth workers get the tools and education they need to advocate for better Black maternal health outcomes, including an annual scholarship that offsets education costs for Black midwifery students.
Mamatoto Village was co-founded by Aza Nedhari, CPM, and Cassietta Pringle, IBCLC, to offer creative solutions to the health disparities Black families face. The organization supports Black pregnant people from pregnancy all the way through postpartum, including comprehensive home visits, guided counseling, wellness coaching, baby care education, birth planning, labor support, postpartum visits and breastfeeding assistance. They even offer various plans and workshops so you can choose the options best suited for your needs. Along with support for Black birthing people, Mamatoto Village also offers training and professional development to new and experienced birth workers.
Check out Mamatoto Village
MommiNation, co-founded by Mykal Steen and four-time Olympic gold-medalist Sanya Richards-Ross, builds a supportive and uplifting community for Black moms across the nation. While they started online, the group has slowly expanded to in-person meetups with chapters in select cities to help further the bond between Black moms in the same communities. Plus, in 2022 Steen and Richards-Ross launched MommiNation Gives, a non-profit that fundraises for underserved communities and displaced families. They raised $78,000 with their first-ever fundraising event, allowing them to secure housing for six months for one displaced mom and her four kids.
Check out MommiNation
Meagan Henderson founded Black Supermamas in the middle of the night shortly after the murder of George Floyd. Having recently given birth to her son and reeling from the state of the world around her, she was looking for a safe space to talk about the reality of motherhood for Black moms. When she didn’t find that community, she created it. Black Supermamas offers a supportive online community and blog posts for Black moms to share their stories, as well as feel seen, heard and validated in their experiences.
Check out Black Supermamas
Erica M. Freeman founded Sisters in Loss after experiencing a devastating stillbirth. She wanted to create a community of Black moms with shared experiences. Since its launch, Freeman has expanded her mission to shattering any stigma associated with miscarriage and pregnancy loss. Not only does she share her own story of loss and her journey as a special needs mom with her Sisters in Loss Podcast, but she also encourages other Black moms to feel empowered to do the same. The organization also trains doulas, including bereavement doulas, and provides sessions for grieving families working through loss, as well as doula services for families experiencing pregnancy again after loss.
Check out Sisters in Loss
According to a 2022 report, Black moms experience higher rates of maternal mental health issues, including postpartum depression and anxiety, in comparison to national estimates. The Shades of Blue Project aims to bridge that gap. It’s a non-profit based in Houston, Texas that works to improve maternal mental health for Black and brown pregnant people. The group offers social support services, career development assistance, therapy, support groups and much more. Plus, The Shades of Blue Project has expanded beyond Texas to offer services in New York, California, Washington and many other states.
Check out The Shades of Blue Project
The NBDA is committed to lowering the devastating statistics around Black maternal health. Not only does it provide training for Black doulas across America, but it also helps connect them to Black birthing families through a professional Doula directory. Plus, it offers extensive resources for Black families, including information on the different types of doulas available during pregnancy and postpartum, as well as a thorough list of questions to ask them.
Check out National Black Doulas Association
Please note: The Bump and the materials and information it contains are not intended to, and do not constitute, medical or other health advice or diagnosis and should not be used as such. You should always consult with a qualified physician or health professional about your specific circumstances.
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