“When we as a society begin to value mothers as the givers and supporters of life, then we will see social change in ways that matter.”
Ina May Gaskin
Grace Community Birth Center is an initiative by Ninotte Lubin, a certified professional midwife from Jacmel, Haiti. Ninotte had the idea for the center after working for three years at two non-profit birthing centers following the 2010 earthquake in Haiti that killed over 200,000 people. She has spent a lot of time studying about Haiti and its ongoing poverty and through this came to realize that the development of any society depends on how the children were birthed and how they are raised.
Ninotte received her training at American and Canadian midwife-run, non-profit birth centers in Haiti, as well as through two private practices in Michigan. These midwives invested their time, money, experience, and many hours of study into helping Ninotte become the midwife she is today. In 2015 she passed the North American Registry of Midwives (NARM) examination to become a certified professional midwife.
Grace Birth Center is supported by a local organization, SAGE (Society for Support and Management of the Environment) in the Northern region of Haiti, and by midwives and friends in the US. Last year, Ninotte was gifted a piece of land (seen below) on which to build the birth center. There are still many hurdles before the center becomes a reality and it is only through the continued support of Ninotte’s local and global community that this worthy project will come to life. To keep up with the latest on the Grace Community Birth Center construction and development, follow along on the blog. Ninotte will be posting photos and updates of her ongoing progress and ways for supporters to get involved.
In my experiences over the past five years of training to become a midwife, I have received so much from friends, supporters, even those who were reluctant to support me but felt like they should. I myself made a lot of effort, but can I say I am deserving? I don’t think so! I’m grateful to God and to what he has allowed me to receive from others.
With that, I am inspired by all that I have had the chance to gain in my experiences to give back to the most needy people in Haiti.
Grace, according to the Bible, means: God’s kindness and love shown to us even though we do not deserve them. God’s grace is offered to the entire human family.
The name of Grace is chosen because it is during the time of childbearing that the women of Haiti need to find a little extra grace in their lives. Life is difficult anywhere, but quite difficult for Haitians. We want the women that come to our clinic to find compassion, support, and individualized care when they need it most. In giving “grace” through the form of professional, compassionate care to the women and babies, I hope to see this generation regenerated through love, respect, and education.