“Accessible knowledge is the best kind” ― Malebo Sephodi
This blog makes for a good story in Lady Whistledown's letters. You heard it right! I'm going on a sabbatical starting March 2023. How fitting to start a blog the same day I became a doula and completed my training in Atlanta, GA. What you may be trying to figure out is, 'what is the Rural Black Doula?". That is a great question. I don't believe it is one thing. It is what I do. Who I am. The folks and communities I serve. The questions I ask. The ways I agitate against oppressive systems. Scandalous, yes!
The origins of the Rural Black Doula connect BIPOC women to community and resources related to health. We traveled from the podcast, Being Olivia, to now a growing community-inspired network of holistic health practitioners seeking to improve health outcomes and experiences for BIPOC families and individuals. So, that answers your next question: What will you do on your sabbatical? The easiest answer....writing. I'm in the last year of my Ph.D. at Iowa State, and I wanted to use the time to nourish my workspace. My research concerns Black midwives and how to create and grow their knowledge. I want to honor the journey I am walking on, and part of that is accountability and focus. I will also hold positions to educate that state social service providers, co-developing programs and educational spaces in the community, and offer virtual doula support to increase access to doula services. I promise I won't be far.
So what should you expect from this blog? All the tea. Sharing about my research, all things health (beyond and around birth), videos, resources, and more. It's clear that knowledge is often withheld and, if not remedied, can harm the communities that need it most.
Want to ask a doula with 4+ years of knowledge in the healthcare and community spaces. Look no further! The RBD Doula Clinic offers consult to discuss your needs and design a plan that covers education, resources, Q&A, and more. Visit Book a Doula, to learn more about the topics covered, access the booking link, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to get started.
Sweet Milk & Oats
The transition back to work is hard after major surgery, a family crisis, and the birth of a little one. Organizations and businesses are directly situated to help ease your worries about returning and provide accommodations that help you transition back to work seamlessly. The type of goodwill leads to better employee retention and satisfaction. My new project, Sweet Milk & Oats, creates a more culturally responsive workplace for diverse families. We focus on addressing barriers that impact families' ability to grow and thrive. We partner with local community organizations and businesses to create sustainable policies, practices, and programs that improve families' network of support, human milk feeding rates, and transitions back to the workforce. Learn more by visiting www.ruralblackdoula.co/sweetmilkandoats .
Kindred Soma Yoga
Kindred Soma Yoga by Jai Olive is the movement for the culture. Soma Yoga combines traditional yoga practices, resting and breathing, therapeutic yoga, the re-education of the mind-body connection, holistic medicine (Ayurveda), and shadow work. We'll be partnering with yoga organizations across Des Moines to bring you regular classes starting in 2023. Learn more by visiting www.ruralblackdoula.co/kindredsomayoga .