Grace Community Birth Center

Ninotte Lubin, CPM


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Summer 2018 at Grace

Ninotte Lubin has been working hard to make Grace Community Birth Center (GCBC) a reliable part of Grand Bassin. She has been developing strong community relationships and while there are some challenges there is a common goal: sustainability.

Community Outreach:

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Young Women Participating in the Crafting Class

Ninotte has found creative ways to teach sexual education and awareness and is moving away from sex ed classes to more interactive ways of teaching. Ninotte began a program that teaches young women valuable crafting skills and at the beginning of each session Ninotte gives a short sex ed presentation. The program had a bumpy start but thanks to Ninotte’s persistence and the instructor’s commitment the participants are dedicated and engaged.

Ninotte is also teaching and inspiring women outside of Grand Bassin. Florcie Tyrell, Haiti Executive Director at PICO (People Improving Community through Organizing) International, invited Ninotte to open a presentation for a group of 30 primary school teachers in Terrier Rouge. Ninotte engaged and enthused her audience with her talk about “violence experienced during pregnancy, birth, and postpartum and its consequences on a child’s brain development”. Florcie and Ninotte’s presentations went over so well that the school’s principle invited them to present again in the future.

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People at the Father’s Day Gathering

On Father’s Day, GCBC held a family focused gathering and Florcie spoke about the importance of families in the community. Fifteen couples attended as well as some individuals. Together, the couples took a questionnaire about family and were inspired to do better at home. Ninotte said that everyone had a “really great time.”

The Garden:

Grand Basin is experiencing a very bad dry season, but has been able to sustain the garden thanks to water from the well. While the bees wait for the flower season (fall and winter) to make honey, Ninotte hopes to talk to someone in the states about strategies for caring for the bees in the off season.

Upcoming Events:

As the business of summer winds down, we’d like to plant a seed in your autumn plans. We are looking forward to when Ninotte travels to Michigan in September and October. We are thrilled to say that she will be participating in speaking engagements and fundraisers, all aimed at raising funds to build the birth center itself. So, join us on Saturday, October 13 at 5:00pm to socialize, connect, and donate to GCBC. This fundraising event will be held at Nature (a new retreat center in Leelanau County owned by Emma and Bryan Cloninger). We hope to see you and your friends there. Watch for upcoming news and details. 

In the News:

As GCBC works on raising the funds for the birth center, SowHope has generously offered to match $20,000.  SowHope has featured Ninotte and GCBC in a news story on their website. Take a second to read the story.

 

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A Mother and Her Healthy Twins

In the photograph: Ninotte was able to help this mother who suffered from preeclampsia get to the hospital in time to save the mother and her twins.

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How YOU can support and help GCBC: 
Financially: 
Become a monthly donor and support GCBC’s education classes. Or make a one time donation: https://gracebirthcenter.org/donate/
Check out Tara Bella Botanicals
25% of the profits from the sale of TBB products go to Grace Community Birth Center.
Make Connections: 
If you know of organizations that can support GCBC, please set up a connection. To do so, please contact Kathi @ kathimulder@gmail.com
If you have ideas about ways to help financially sustain GCBC, please let us know.
Spread the Word: 
Encourage people to check out the website, tell your friends, encourage them to tell theirs.
Follow GCBC on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gracebirthcenter/
Follow GCBC on Twitter: https://twitter.com/GraceBirthHaiti
To receive updates, enter your email in the sidebar.
Volunteer: 
If you are interested in volunteering please send an email explaining your interest and skillset: gracebirthcenter@gmail.com

 

Written by Nadia Daniels-Moehle
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Late Spring 2018 at Grace

Grace Community Birth Center (GCBC) understands the importance of transparency in the development of community relationships. Part of this development is engagement, and Ninotte has involved and empowered young people and mothers alike.

For Mother’s Day Florcy spoke to a group at GCBC about mother’s roles in “community, society, and the world”. After the talk women shared what they learned and how they would integrate these lessons into family life.

Creative ways of engaging young people has proven successful, with a lot of room to grow. At a sexual education class participants had fun making cards for their mothers, in celebration of mothers day, after the class.

 

 

A first time client at GCBC was able to have a great birth, thanks in part to Ninotte’s expertise, the mother of 6 was very happy and thankful.

 

 

As the garden continues to flourish, the peanut plants grow strong and there is space prepared to pant plantains. A section of the property will be filled with pigeon peas and tapioca, which originates from the cassava root, both of these are great nourishment in the Haitian diet.

GCBC has partnered with Community Coalition for Haiti (CCH), of Jacmel, to teach Days for Girls in schools. Rubinste St. Louis, in-country director for CCH and GCBC board member, and Melissa Jean-Bart, Health resources and clinic coordinator, were kind enough to give 40 Days for Girls kits to GCBC, and Ninotte is now able to supply them to girls in the community. More happy members of the GCBC community:

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These young women valued the kits and their privacy: concealing their faces with their kits.

Stay tuned for regular updates from Grace Community Birth Center.

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How YOU can support and help GCBC: 
Financially: 
Become a monthly donor and support GCBC’s education classes. Or make a one time donation: https://gracebirthcenter.org/donate/
Check out Tara Bella Botanicals
25% of the profits from the sale of TBB products go to Grace Community Birth Center.
Make Connections: 
If you know of organizations that can support GCBC, please set up a connection. To do so, please contact Kathi @ kathimulder@gmail.com
If you have ideas about ways to help financially sustain GCBC, please let us know.
Spread the Word: 
Encourage people to check out the website, tell your friends, encourage them to tell theirs.
Follow GCBC on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gracebirthcenter/
Follow GCBC on Twitter: https://twitter.com/GraceBirthHaiti
To receive updates, enter your email in the sidebar.
Volunteer: 
If you are interested in volunteering please send an email explaining your interest and skillset: gracebirthcenter@gmail.com

 

Written by Nadia Daniels-Moehle


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Spring 2018 at Grace

Written by Nadia Daniels-Moehle

So much has happened at Grace Community Birth Center in the last few months, new honey from beehives, connecting with the community, planting peanuts, well received sex-ed classes, and, of course, births. Ninotte Lubin, CPM shared updates about the amazing things GCBC has been up to.

At the beginning of the year GCBC hosted meetings between healthcare providers and community leaders. “We got to share the full spectrum of the project. Everyone is excited to participate as we have our own education center,” Ninotte said. The Presbyterian Church of Traverse City, Michigan funded the “Education Center” which was built in 2017.

While preparing for one of these meetings, on January 31, they noticed that a pregnant and nearly due neighbor presented symptoms of pre-eclampsia. Ninotte promptly sent her to the hospital. “Later the same day she had a c-section with surprise twins.” Ninotte almost certainly saved the life of this woman and her babies!

“As you can see in the pictures, the twins are growing and looking healthy (a boy and a girl) and exclusively breastfeeding. These people are so grateful to have GCBC in the community.”

 

Grace Community Birth Center’s 25 beehives have been fruitful. “We did a honey harvest where we shared with some people in the community and some potential clients. We were able to make around $100 from the honey. The next harvest will be sold as we plan ahead.”

Ninotte has been working with women in the community, facilitating ways for them to connect. “On March 8, we celebrated International Women’s Day with the women’s group in the community. We had a special guest, Florcy L Tyrel, and we had a great time together thinking about how we, as women, can rebuild the community to make it a better place for our children.

GCBC’s sex education classes have begun; they take place on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Having three different classes is beneficial. “With fewer people in each class it is more enjoyable and fun to teach and learn. It’s great so far.” Ninotte continues to reach out, hoping to include more young people in the sex ed classes. “I was invited to a couple other neighborhoods to motivate some more to come. The boys got excited. Next week we will definitely have more of them.”

On March 26, community members helped GCBC plant peanuts, “We had some men to dig holes and women adding the peanuts and covering them. It was great.”

“We are expecting to start a peanut butter project with the women in the community.” The peanuts are scheduled to be harvested sometime in July and August.

In April, Ninotte was very excited to welcome Kathi and Craig Mulder to Haiti. “I feel so good that, finally, a couple of GCBC board members, supporters (especially from Traverse City) are coming to witness the progress of what we have made together. I can’t wait for them to land.”

“It was such a gift to see all that Ninotte is doing and to meet the Grand Bassin community, Kathi reflected on their time in Haiti. “When we met with some of the community leaders and health care workers they voiced the need for the women to have a safe, clean place to give birth with well trained midwives in attendance. We hope to break ground for the actual birth center sometime next year!”

Kathi and Craig arrived in Haiti with donated supplies, including kits from Days for Girls of Benzie County, Michigan. “Thanks to generous donations from several sources we were able to bring some much needed supplies.  Days for Girls of Benzie County provided cloth menstrual kits for the girls attending the sexual education classes.” As Kathi explained, “the girls were grateful to receive these and would like to learn how to sew their own.”


Stay tuned for monthly updates from Grace Community Birth Center.


How YOU can support and help GCBC: 

Financially: 

Become a monthly donor and support GCBC’s education classes. Or make a one time donation: https://gracebirthcenter.org/donate/

Check out Tara Bella Botanicals where 25% of the profits from the sale of TBB products go to Grace Community Birth Center.

Make Connections: 

If you know of organizations that can support GCBC, please set up a connection.

If you have ideas about ways to help financially sustain GCBC, please let us know.

Spread the Word: 

Encourage people to check out the website, tell your friends, encourage them to tell theirs.

Follow GCBC on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gracebirthcenter/

Follow GCBC on Twitter: https://twitter.com/GraceBirthHaiti

To receive updates, enter your email in the sidebar.

Volunteer: 

If you are interested in volunteering please send an email explaining your interest and skillset: gracebirthcenter@gmail.com


Leave a comment

July Classes at Grace: Micro-Finance, Prenatal Visits, Sexual Education, and Theater

On June 23, Ninotte held a meeting with 17 women from the Grand Bassin community to discuss putting together a grant for a micro-finance loan. She held a second meeting on July 9th at which 24 were women present. She taught them about leadership and led a productive group discussion about the women’s concerns in the community. Ninotte sees micro-finance as a promising way forward for the women of Grand Bassin and a potential avenue to jump-start sustainable support for Grace Birth Center. She plans to continue discussing idea for micro-loan projects with the women.

Also on July 9th, Ninotte saw four pregnant women for prenatal visits. These check-ups have been difficult to do given the limitation of their current spaces and the lack of privacy, but she found a way! They are all looking forward to having a more stable structure in which to hold classes and conduct prenatal and postpartum visits.

On June 24th, Ninotte held her biweekly girls’ sexual education and family planning course.

Then on July 8th, her friend Eby, who works in film production, came to the girls’ classes to discuss theater. He taught the girls about writing and acting as a way to increase their confidence and sense of self-worth. There were 60 girls present.

The new speaker and generator, provided by a generous contribution from the Rotary Foundation of Traverse City have been working out great!

As for the Grace land, Ninotte and her team continue to make improvements in anticipation of more permanent inhibition. Over the past couple weeks they have planted Moringa Trees, which will provide flowers for the bees and a source of food for the pregnant women, as the the leaves of full of protein. They also planted more citrus tree and some root vegetables.

Below are some pictures of the activities over the last few weeks.

Watching and discussing a film in the girls’ class:

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Eby’s Theater Workshop:

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The Moringa Trees:

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May at Grace

I’m late posting, but May was a busy month for Grace Community Birth Center. Despite lots of rain and bad roads, Ninotte traveled to Grand Bassin and taught full classes on the 13th and the 20th. She also oversaw the completion of the well. There is water for Grace! The first construction milestone is complete. Big thanks to the Mazzara family!

Now that there is a fence and a water source, Ninotte and team have planted some fruit trees on the land. They have constructed more beehives and intend to eventually use the honey as an income source for Grace.

From May 30th- June 1st,  Ninotte and her colleague, Tania, again traveled to Grand Bassin to complete a training session on newborn care for community members. Six people completed the training and learned essential skills such as newborn resuscitation and cord burning.

Finally, Ninotte has her first patients. Two young women in the community are pregnant and Ninotte will attend their births in the fall.

Here are some images of the recent happenings at Grace:

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The beehives.

 

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Classes at Grace.

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The newborn care training.

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Ninotte’s first clients. 


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AU SUJET DE

 “Quand nous, en tant que société, allons commencer à valoriser les mères comme donneuses et partisanes de la vie, alors nous allons observer un changement social de manière importante”

Ina May Gaskin

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Le centre de naissance de Grace Community Birth Center est une initiative de Ninotte Lubin, une sage-femme professionnelle certifiée de Jacmel, en Haïti. Après le séisme de 2010 en Haïti, qui a tué plus de 200.000 personnes, Ninotte a eu l’idée pour ce projet après avoir travaillé, pendant trois ans, à deux centres d’accouchement sans but lucratif. Elle a passé beaucoup de temps à étudier sur l’Haïti et sa pauvreté courante. Grâce à cela, elle s’est rendue compte que le développement de toute société dépend de la façon que les enfants ont été mis au monde et comment ils ont été élevés.

Ninotte Profile Picture

Ninotte a reçu sa formation dans les centres de naissance à but non lucratif, autogérés par des sages-femmes américaines et canadiennes, ainsi que dans deux pratiques privées au Michigan. Ces sages-femmes ont investi leur temps, leur argent, et leur expérience, ainsi que de nombreuses heures d’étude, pour que Ninotte devienne la sage-femme qu’elle est aujourd’hui. En 2015, elle s’est joint au Registre nord-américain des sages-femmes (NARM) en passant ses examens, ainsi devenant une sage-femme professionnelle certifiée (CPM).
Le centre de naissance Grace est appuyé par une organisation locale, le SAGE (Société de soutien et de gestion de l’environnement) dans la région du nord de l’Haïti, et par des sages-femmes et amis aux États-Unis. L’an dernier, une parcelle de terre (voir ci-dessous), sur laquelle sera construit le centre de naissance, a été donné en cadeau à Ninotte. Il y a encore de nombreux obstacles avant que le centre devienne une réalité et c’est seulement par le soutien continu de la communauté locale et globale de Ninotte, que ce digne projet verra le jour. Pour suivre les dernières nouvelles sur la construction et le développement du Centre communautaire de naissance Grace, suivez le blog. Ninotte va publier des photos et des mises à jour de ses progrès en cours, ainsi que des moyens pour que les supporters y participent.

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Le terrain de trois acres sur lequel le centre Grâce sera construit

Pourquoi le nom Grace?
Dans mes expériences au cours des cinq dernières années de formation pour devenir sage-femme, j’ai énormément reçu d’amis, de supporters, même de ceux qui étaient réticents à me soutenir, mais se sentaient comme s’ils devaient le faire. J’ai moi-même fait beaucoup d’efforts, mais puis-je vraiment dire que je suis digne? Je ne crois pas! Je suis reconnaissante envers Dieu et à ce qu’il m’a permis de recevoir des autres.
Grace à cela, je suis inspirée par tout ce que j’ai eu la chance de gagner à travers mes expériences, pour redonner aux plus démunis en Haïti.

Selon la Bible, Grâce signifie: la bonté et l’amour de Dieu qui nous sont démontrés, bien que nous ne les méritions pas. La grâce de Dieu est offerte à tous les êtres humains.
Le nom de Grace est choisi parce que, dans la période de la maternité, les femmes d’Haïti ont besoin de trouver un peu de grâce supplémentaire dans leur vie. La vie est difficile partout, mais amplement difficile pour les Haïtiens. Nous souhaitons que les femmes qui viennent à notre clinique puissent trouver la compassion, le soutien et les soins individualisés dont elles ont le plus besoin. En prodiguant la «grâce» sous la forme, de soins professionnels compatissants aux femmes et aux bébés, j’espère voir cette génération régénérée dans l’amour, le respect, et l’éducation.