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  • Writer's pictureCharlotte Brielle

✨Global Birthkeeping~ Culture is Dynamic, Birth is Universal ✨

Dearest Wombs of the World Community,

 

A heartfelt welcome to our newest members and subscribers! It's a privilege to share our mission and vision with you. At the heart of our endeavors is the drive to enhance maternal health outcomes globally, by empowering birthworkers with tools, knowledge, and a sense of community. The essence of Wombs of the World is captured in the spirit of the people—you, the dedicated birth keepers who journey with us, blending the call to this work with the call to explore.

 

My recent month in Tanzania was a journey filled with learning, reflection, and connection. I'm continually inspired by the birthworkers who share these experiences, each bringing unique insights and important feedback that strengthen the fabric of our mission.

A few important and exciting updates:

 

1) Our Team on the Ground: Finally, a milestone moment for WotW- we've established our first on-the-ground team in Tanzania. A warm welcome to Agnes and Kai, who are not just residents of this beautiful country but also phenomenal birthworkers, dedicated mothers, compassionate sisters, and visionary leaders. Their deep cultural understanding, linguistic skills, and unwavering commitment empower us to not only elevate our impact but also root our efforts in a truly sustainable and respectful manner.



2) Hospital Support and Equipment: In collaboration with Dr Heriel, the Director of Karatu Lutheran District Hospital, we addressed critical needs to save young lives. He highlighted the hospital's challenges, from a shortage of medical supplies and equipment to the dire need for warm environments and oxygen support for newborns. Our initiative to acquire medical oxygen concentrators, splinters, overhead heat lamps, and fetal dopplers is a step toward mitigating these challenges, aiming for a future where no life is lost due to a lack of resources. We also dreamed big looking into the future, discussing things like broader educational community outreach and even a mobile clinic, as lack of information and transportation are their leading problems in perinatal care.

 

3) Update on the Maasai Women: Our Instagram fundraiser has raised over $1500, enabling us to support a Maasai women's sewing collective and provide goats, illustrating the profound impact of investing in women! Thank you for your support!! When we empower women, they, in turn, enrich their families and communities. The Maasai women's initiative is a testament to the power of community-led action and the incredible potential within these collaborations. More to come!

Reflecting and Integrating:

 

The challenges mothers face in Tanzania are the same issues perinatal women confront every day around the world. Modern-day medicinal practices were built on a foundation that disempowered women and marginalized traditional midwifery, casting long shadows over birthing women today, resulting in health disparities and trauma.

 

What I admire about working with the indigenous midwives in Ecuador is their ability to blend ancestral knowledge with modern-day, life-saving medicine. The sacredness, spirituality, and ceremony of birth fuel us birthkeepers. There is power in resources, and there is also power in presence, storytelling, and challenging the status quo.

 

We witnessed this power in Tanzania while supporting a first-time mother. A similar story we often see in the West... the mother not progressing fast enough, doctors eager to go home, pushing towards a c-section. This brave mother's labor noticeably slowed down every time a gaggle of male doctors in their day clothes walked in to observe her. Enter the doula—respectfully reminding these doctors, "Hey, she is doing great! Birth takes time! But you here watching her like this is likely making her really uncomfortable and slowing down her labor... so with all due respect, please leave."

 

Suddenly surrounded by a team of women all eager to support her, nurses open to our suggestions for positional changes, counterpressure against her sits bones, and encouragement in a language she understood, this beautiful mama brought a healthy baby earthside.

 

It all boils down to trusting birth, and I also trust medical expertise as I've seen it save lives. These two schools of thought are not exclusive but complementary.

 

Have I mentioned recently how much I LOVE BIRTH!? It's an honor to witness the miracle of life. Every. Single. Time. 



Call to Action:

 

While my heart and dreams remain with the clinics in Tanzania and the rich red earth, I must implore you, if you have any resources to spare, to please support the mothers and babies suffering in Gaza. Great organizations like the United Nations Population Fund and UNICEF, are working tirelessly to provide resources to these mothers who have lost everything and continue to birth and care for infants in horrendously devastating environments.

 

When will we elect grandmothers and stop going to war?

 

The growth of Wombs of the World and our Foundation fills me with hope and excitement. The momentum is palpable, and we're eager to welcome more passionate individuals into our fold. We need more hands on deck! Whether through mentoring, traveling, or joining our Council of Crones, your involvement can help usher in the maternal health renaissance.

 

As we await the rise of the matriarchy... I thank you for being part of this incredible journey, for your unwavering support, and for sharing the belief that together, we can make a world of difference.

 

With all my gratitude and love,

 

Charlotte Brielle

Director of Wombs of the World




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