For our June Brownieland Volunteer Project, the Brownieland Team has organized a donation drive with Embrace Refugee Birth Support in honor of World Refugee Day!
Embrace Refugee Birth Support is a nonprofit organization with a mission to support, advocate for and educate refugees throughout the pregnancy, birth, and postpartum experience. Embrace is located in Clarkston, a city just east of Atlanta called “the most diverse square mile in America,” where people from 150 countries, 760 ethnic groups, and speaking 140 languages live. The vision of Embrace is to empower and train refugee women to serve as childbirth assistants and educators within their ethnic communities.
Embrace began in 2010 when a childbirth educator and doula contacted a local refugee resettlement agency to offer their services to pregnant clients. After attending a handful of prenatal appointments and three births, the founders of Embrace began to realize that the disparities these new Americans faced were all-encompassing. Embrace joined Friends of the Refugees, an organization that empowers refugees through opportunities that provide for their well-being, education, and employment, and began to raise funds. In 2011, Embrace held its first volunteer training in the basement of a program founder’s home, and the program launched in earnest.
Embrace provides services to support refugee mothers through a variety of programs. Healthy Mom Classes are an eight-week series of courses that give refugee mothers an overview of what they will encounter during their pregnancy, birth, and postpartum experience in the United States. Embrace offers Pregnancy, Labor, Birth, and Postpartum Support with a program that involves training labor support volunteers and matching them with expecting or new moms. Volunteers assist expecting refugee moms with tasks like taking a mom to her prenatal appointments, helping secure baby supplies, and providing emotional and relational support during this transition into motherhood. Embrace also provides a weekly Mom’s Circle where mothers and their children gather to talk about the joys and challenges of parenting.
Embrace has officially weathered the COVID storm and just resumed in-person classes (outside). With that said, the number of moms attending these programs has risen, so Embrace is in need of more volunteers and donations. This is where our Brownieland donation drive comes in. Check out the Embrace Refugee Birth Support Amazon Wishlist to donate items that support new mothers, give a cash donation, or volunteer your time to lend a hand to this incredible organization!
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