Celebrating Voices for Birth Justice Campaign Launch


Alexis Cobbins

children in the audience

On Friday, November 15th, we were thrilled to support the launching of the Voices for Birth Justice public awareness and storytelling campaign with an open mic night at Redbay Coffee in Fruitville. We had over 100 attendees, 11 vendors, and 13 storytellers who helped make the event special. 


Voices for Birth Justice (“Voices”) is a storytelling campaign conceived by the Community Advisory Board of the UCSF California Preterm Birth Initiative in partnership with the human-centered design company IDEO.org. It features advocates of all backgrounds and professions who are working to improve birth outcomes for Black and Brown women and families. Each story acts as a lighthouse, illuminating shared experiences, resources and examples of action to inspire, inform and connect others to the birth justice movement.


According to the CDC, Black women in the U.S. have preterm births at a 50 percent higher rate than White women (14% vs. 9%). Black infants have a mortality rate twice that of White infants, with approximately 44% of those deaths related to being born preterm.

After interviewing over 100 community advocates, providers and parents, we heard that families were both unaware of their risks and were not being connected to culturally appropriate resources at the right time. People were continually drawn to stories of the champions within their communities who work to address Black and Brown maternal and child health outcomes. Through these advocates’ stories, Voices reframes Black and Brown birth outcomes through a lense of strength and resilience, of warmth and hope, and of action and change.


We are currently working to launch our website (www.voicesforbirthjustice.org) in early 2020!