Offering Maternal-Child Health Education, Training, Consultation and Support.
Promoting Mother-Baby Friendly Maternity Care
Cultivating Trust in Birth. Supporting Informed Choices.
This is an occasion as well as for so many friends and colleagues to come together and take stock for where we stand and what more needs to be done in advancing the great unfinished business of the 21st century—advancing rights and opportunities for women and girls.”
-Hilary Rodham Clinton
The Laurence H. and Caroline T. Charitable Trust
A Project of Life is Networking Knowledge (LINK)
To register for our trainings go to: Eventbrite
Download our volunteer application form here: Volunteer Application Form
Who We Are
We are maternal-child health professionals and concerned citizens dedicated to improving the quality of maternity care and the experience of childbirth and new motherhood for Los Angeles women and their newborns. We promote a self-growth approach to pregnancy and the normalcy of childbirth. As advocates for mothers and babies, we seek to ensure that each mother is treated with dignity and respect during her pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum periods. We are inspired by the possibility of childbirth to transform mothers, fathers, birthworkers and society.
About Our Organization
Founded as an educational venture in 1993, Wholistic Midwifery School of Southern California started DBA The Association for Wholistic Maternal and Newborn Health in 2011. We are a training and advocacy organization with a grass roots, community-based approach to support direct-service providers to promote the health of mothers, infants, and families. We provide staff development training for community perinatal health workers, nurses, and other professionals. We design community-based initiatives, engage and mobilize diverse stakeholders to develop wholistically-oriented programs and policies that improve maternal and child health. Our intent is to mobilize the community to implement culturally appropriate wholistic approaches to perinatal health so as to improve outcomes and quality of maternity care in all settings: clinics, hospitals, birth centers and domiciliary settings. We are working as a project of Life is Networking Knowledge (LINK).
About Life Is Networking Knowledge (LINK), Our Fiscal Agent
Life is Networking Knowledge (LINK), a California non-profit 501(c) 3 health care and educational organization, provides services that improve and enhance healthcare and wellness education in the underserved communities of South Los Angeles. LINK strives to ensure that patient needs are treated beyond the medical to include mental, social and emotional aspects of their well-being, by developing and supporting innovative programs that improve the quality of life for all persons and families in and around the community.The organization strives to ensure that patient needs are treated beyond the medical to include mental, social and emotional aspects of their well-being, by developing and supporting innovative programs that improve the quality of life for all persons and families in and around the community. The organization operates Pink Lotus Health Care, a Community Health Center in South Los Angeles, to help achieve optimal community health in the communities. As one of the few community health centers in the area, LINK’s strategy includes strong emphasis on prevention, early intervention, rehabilitation, education, and direct care delivery, with an emphasis on teen reproductive health services and health education.
What We Do
- We develop and implement innovative initiatives that aim to close the gap on health disparities and reach public health objectives for maternal and infant health. We design and deliver health education training for nurses, midwives, childbirth educators, community-based Doulas, breastfeeding peer counselors and community perinatal health workers.
- We conduct training and technical support for hospitals, clinics and community-based agencies committed to creating supportive environments for childbearing women and their families, and promoting evidence-based maternity care.
- We provide consultation for independent medical providers and community clinics with Medi-Cal Comprehensive Perinatal Support Services Programs (CPSP). Our Health Education Consultation and Psychosocial Consultation are provided by Masters-prepared health educators (MPH) who are Certified Health Education Specialists (CHES). Our Psychosocial Consultants are Marraige and Family Therapists (MFT) and Clinical Psychologists (Psy.D.) , with expertise in maternity and prenatal care. Our services include CPSP protocol development and review, chart audit, convening multidiscliplinary care coordination, in-service training for Comprehensive Perinatal Health Workers (CPHWs) and Prenatal Clinicians and more.
- We provide training for prenatal program staff, doulas, community health workers, perinatal case managers and nurses. Our courses include: Breastfeeding Peer Counseling Training, Perinatal Support Specialist Training, Childbirth Education for Maternal-Infant Health Workers, Pre and Intraconception Health Education (PICH), Cultural Awareness and Communication Skills, and Registered Nurse continuing education courses (RN-CEUs).
- We provide prenatal education, childbirth and postpartum support services for pregnant and postpartum women, including labor doula support, postpartum doula support, childbirth education (Lamaze) classes, lactation education, consultation and support for breastfeeding.
- Our philosophy of care is a “self-growth”approach to pregnancy and childbirth, recognizing the profundity of physiological childbirth and its potential to transform women’s lives, families and communities. We are dedicated to helping families have empowering, satisfying and joyous experiences from conception through gestation, childbearing, breastfeeding and early parenthood.
In 1993, Wholistic Midwifery School of Southern California was founded and spearheaded by Cordelia Hanna-Cheruiyot (formerly Cordelia Hanna), MPH, CHES, ICCE, CLE, CBA along with two midwives, with the purpose to establish a professional midwifery training program and develop a freestanding birth center serving low-income, disadvantaged communities. This is still our goal, but since then, we have expanded our mission to include the professional development of allied healthcare providers (community health promoters, case managers, nurses, physicians, doulas, health educators, etc.) working with perinatal communities. We do so through promotion of the Mother-Friendly Childbirth Initiative (MFCI) developed by the Coalition for Improving Maternity Services (CIMS). The MFCI is an evidence-based consensus document designed to improve quality of maternity care and improve birth outcomes.In 2011, we established the DBA The Association for Wholistic Maternal and Newborn Health. Currently we work as a project of Poverty Solutions, Inc., a community housing and development corporation located in South Los Angeles.
In FY 2011-2013, we received a grant from the California Community Foundation (CCF) for Hospital Improvements and Nursing Education. In addition, we are supported by The Caroline T. and Laurence H. Tribe Charitable Trust, and private donations from citizens who believe in our mission and work, and fee for services provided.
We are concerned with reducing disparities in maternal-infant health such as:
- Maternal Mortality
- Infant Mortality
- High Rates of Cesarean Section
- Read More…
What Is “Wholistic” Maternity Care?
We promote an integrated, multidisciplinary approach to maternity care which encompasses the physiological, spiritual, psychological, and socioecological determinants of health. Our vision is to work in harmony and collaboration with a variety of care providers, both conventional and alternative including hospitals, physicians clinics, nurses, midwives, mental health specialists, health educators, nutritionists and paraprofessionals —such as doulas, community health promoters, breastfeeding peer counselors –and other allied health professionals–including “body-mind” health practitioners (yoga instructors, acupuncturists, bodyworkers, chiropractors, etc.) with specialization in maternal and newborn health.
Robbie Davis-Floyd, Ph.D., Medical Anthropologist, in her article The Technocratic, Humanistic, and Holistic Paradigms of Childbirth which appeared in the International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Vol 75, Supplement No. 1, pp. S5-S23, November 2001, described the main components of the [w]holistic model of care as distinct from the other models of care, having the following components:
- Oneness of body-mind-spirit
- The body as an energy system interlinked with other energy systems
- Healing the whole person in whole-life context
- Essential unity of practitioner and client
- Diagnosis and healing from the inside out
- Networking organizational structure that facilitates individualization of care
- Authority and responsibility inherent in each individual
- Science and technology placed at the service of the individual
- A long-term focus on creating and maintaining health and well-being
- Death as a step in a process
- Healing as the focus
- Embrace of multiple healing modalities
Basic underlying principles: Connection and integration
Type of thinking: Fluid, multimodal, right-brained
For a thorough comparison of the [w] holistic model of maternity care to the technocratic model of maternity care, which is the dominant model in the U.S., and to the humanistic model of maternity care, please reference Davis-Floyd’s article on her website: http://davis-floyd.com. Ms. Davis-Floyd’s work inspires our mission and vision.
If you BELIEVE in our mission…
CONTRIBUTE your time and talents ….
Make a DONATION…of any amount.
Your donation can be to our organization for general purposes, or can be earmarked for a specific project (either existing or in development).
Projects and Programs Include:
- Community-Based Doula Program
- Breastfeeding Peer Counselor Program
- Freestanding Birth Center and School of Midwifery
- The Mother-Friendly Childbirth Initiative of Los Angeles County
- Birth Information and Resources for Teen Health (B.I.R.T.H.) Mother-Mentor Program, which empowers pregnant and parenting teens who are in foster care by providing them with mentorship, support and empowerment and life and leadership skills.
The Association for
Wholistic Maternal and Newborn Health
Donations are accepted on behalf of AWMNH under Life Is Networking Knowledge (LINK), our fiscal agent.