Tag Archives: birth activism

One World Birth: The Launch of a Global Media Project and a Revolution

31 Aug

How does a cesarean birth rate nearing or exceeding 50 percent impact society? What will it mean for future generations of women when in our own, many women are disconnected from their own bodies and are afraid to give birth? What does it say about our culture which takes it for granted that maternity care providers find it necessary to protect themselves first and do what’s best for their patients second meanwhile producing poor health outcomes?  What will it take to change the status quo and give the power of birth back to women? Perhaps, nothing less than a revolution. On Thursday, September 1st watch the launch of One World Birth a free video site, online living documentary, a TV channel about birth and a feature length documentary for worldwide release.

The project creators of One World Birth are Toni Harman and Alex Wakeford. Their mission is to make birth better and safer around the world and to empower women to make informed choices about childbirth.

The documentary film begins with a quote from Thomas Jefferson. “Every generation needs a new revolution.”

One World Birth is a global cross-media film project that is also building a community of birth professionals to connect, inspire and to help deliver change. Featured in the film are world renowned birth professionals, researchers and maternity care academics including Sarah Buckley, Michel Odent, Sheila Kitzinger, Debra Pascali-Bonaro, Ina May Gaskin, Soo Downe, and Elizabeth Davis.

Using social media, the producers aim to encourage local action, campaign for policy change, press for media coverage and when the time comes seize the moment.  The trailer of One World Birth which has been on their website for several weeks has already fired up birth activists around the world to create sub-titles for the film in more than seven languages.

Co-creator Toni Harman makes the important point that; “One World Birth is also about YOU! Everyone loves hearing from the leading experts, but what makes this site even more exciting is that we want to include the midwives, doulas and campaigners who are at the front line of birth as your stories are vital to the bigger global picture!”

One World Birth gives everyone around the world who believes that change in childbirth is long overdue the opportunity to get involved and make changes in their own communities.

A California Non-Profit Helps Mothers Reduce Their Odds for Cesarean By Helping To Pay For Doulas, Midwives, and Birth Center Births

2 Dec

As with many other communities in the United States, in South Orange County, California expectant mothers have unlimited access to high intervention hospital options for childbirth, including an elective cesarean section, but restricted access to a midwifery model of care in or out of the hospital. However, the Community Alliance for Birth Options (CABO), a non-profit group dedicated to helping families access non-interventive care believes that all expectant mothers should have access to birth options that meet their needs. CABO awards women, with financial hardships or lack of insurance coverage, scholarships to help pay for non-interventive maternity care services of their choice. Research shows that by giving birth with a midwife, having a doula, and giving birth at home or in a birth center women are much less likely to be exposed to the harms of routine medical interventions and less likely to have a cesarean.

In May 2008 the only hospital-based nurse-midwifery service in the community was disbanded when the OB services at South Coast Medical Center closed its doors. However, through donations and by sponsoring annual fundraisers and silent auctions CABO has found a way to provide families with the financial support they need to pay for a doula, choose a certified nurse-midwife as a primary care provider, or give birth in a birth center. Often, health insurance coverage does not include reimbursement for these services.

On December 10, 2010 CABO will hold its Holiday Evening Fundraiser at the Coto De Caza Golf & Racquet Club. Last May CABO awarded three scholarships of up to $3500. All awards are kept confidential.

CABO also provides outreach and education on alternative and complementary maternity services for women. The non-profit’s goals include advocating for evidence-based care, educating the community about the safety of low-interventive birth options, promoting collaborative practice of nurse-midwives and physicians, and advocating for change in the current health care system.

CABO and other birth activist groups who support the midwifery model of care are actively pushing back the medical establishement and insurance companies who control access to and reimbursement for midwifery care, birth centers, doulas, VBAC, and home births.

Watch a video about Beach Cities Midwifery, one option available to families in South Orange County.


Resources For Non-Interventive Care

American Association of Birth Centers

BirthNetwork National

Citizens For Midwifery

Dona International

Mothers Naturally

My Midwife

The Big Push for Midwives

Where’s My Midwife?