I had the honor and privilege to contribute a presentation entitled, "Sisterhood in the Black Birth Community" at the 2014 Birth Herstory Conference. The unifying question that organizer Tanya Malcolm asked all the presenters was, "how do you honor your roots in your birth work?"
This really sparked me to think about how RootMama carries on a rich legacy of the Black midwifery model of care, traditional birth assistance and ancient birth wisdom. I reflected on why it's so important to me to carry on the traditions of sisterhood in birth - women supporting women through a vulnerable, challenging, joyous and miraculous period of our lives.
At the heart of RootMama is the essence of sisterhood and community. At the foundation of RootMama is love for self (Black community) and commitment to see our future generations succeed. Our approach is do for self. Our outlook is that we're capable of achieving anything. We never ask for handouts, but rather offer value to the community and create opportunities for reciprocity.
The photo above is near and dear to my heart. I was invited to participate in a Community Baby Shower at Roots in the City hosted by DJ Queen Agnes. I never met Agnes or any of her team. She extended sisterhood to me by allowing me to go and share inspirational words to three pregnant women being celebrated at the shower and to the community as a whole about the value of the childbearing woman. It was so beautiful. RootMama was a "baby" at the time as I had just launched. I look back and smile on this beautiful picture. RootMama remains in touch with most all the participants and has even assisted in the birth of one.
The RootMama difference is our constant engagement and contributions to the community. The RootMama approach is to connect, convene, uplift, empower and inspire. In the villages of our foremothers, we never traveled the journey of childbirth alone. The women in the village that assisted in childbirth were highly revered, even considered priestesses for their vital role in ushering beings from one realm to the other. I feel extremely proud of my roots and am grateful for the opportunity to live my calling. Ashe.
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Sis. Freya is the creator of RootMama. She loves encouraging women to achieve greatness.
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