Looking for Maternal Resources?These Entrepreneurs Are Making a Difference

Preparing for motherhood can be challenging, and maternal health is filled with intricate moments and the necessity for the right information. Black Health Matters has created a list of five maternal health entrepreneurs who are paving the way in healthcare and making a difference for the collective wellness of our community. These visionaries are driven by purpose and are actively addressing disparities to prevent trauma and generate more positive experiences regarding Black women and maternal healthcare.
Nana Eyeson-Akiwowo and Marcia Cole – Fourth Phase
Fourth Phase is an exceptional company founded by Nana Eyeson-Akiwowo and Marcia Cole. The duo are good friends and philanthropists and decided to combine their skills from their former careers as magazine and digital editors. Much of the inspiration for Fourth Phase came from a trip Nana took to Ghana; there, she saw a gap in the attentiveness and care provided for new mothers. At the time, Nana and Marcia were already heavily involved in women’s maternal and reproductive care. As Nana held events to provide free postpartum care packages to women in Ghana, Marcia launched a non-profit to deliver sanitary napkins to homeless shelters. From their shared interests and diligent research, Fourth Phase was launched in 2021.
Fourth Phase offers a range of postpartum care boxes perfectly tailored to different birthing needs. Most of the products on the website are below $200 and provide breastfeeding, c-section, mental well-being, and pelvic care kits. Fourth Phase products are cruelty-free, phthalate-free, organic, and sustainably sourced. Nana and Marcia have worked hard to create a support system for mothers and expectant mothers that holistically targets maternal health, highlighting the importance of physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual needs.
Latham Thomas – Mama Glow
After giving birth to her son Fulano in 2003, Latham Thomas made it her mission to help women reclaim birth. Latham is a graduate of Columbia University and The Insititute for Integrative Nutrition. She is a maternity lifestyle maven, a world-renowned wellness leader, and a master-birth doula. With her impressive wellness background, it was only right that Latham founded Mama Glow. Based in New York City, Mama Glow delivers an array of offerings for women and families along the paths of fertility, pregnancy, and new motherhood to provide women with confidence and maternal satisfaction. Mama Glow provides resources that nurture the wellness of women from conception to delivery; their services include:

Doula packages.
Yoga packages.
Personal development and lifestyle coaching.
Spirit, self-care, and ritual packages.
Wellness residency.
Corporate consulting.
Training and gatherings.

Mama Glow takes holistic care to an entirely new level as the company works to bridge gaps in maternal care in all spaces, including the workplace. Latham Thomas has successfully designed a safe space that helps mothers and expectant mothers stand in power and embrace motherhood for its beauty and radiance.
Kimberly Allers – Irth 
Kimberly Allers is an award-winning journalist, speaker, advocate, and entrepreneur who deserves recognition for her innovative stride toward deconstructing racism and bias in maternity and infant care and equalizing the country’s birthing experiences. She created Irth, the only app where you can find prenatal, birthing, postpartum, and pediatric care reviews from other Black and brown parents.
Kimberly’s passion for Black maternal health is intricately connected to her experience. She had a firsthand encounter with the bias in American maternal health care. After completing her master’s degree at Columbia University, Kimberly gave birth to her first child at a hospital that was supposed to be one of the best in New York City. Her experience there did not live up to her expectations. She felt disrespected, ignored, traumatized, and violated. Unfortunately, Kimberly’s experience is shared by many Black women, and we tend to wonder how hospitals with such high ratings can continue to fail us. Well, Kimberly has the answer: it is biased; implicit bias is often cast onto Black women as we try to navigate our health and wellness, especially during the journey to motherhood.
Kimberly believes that everyone deserves an empowered birth experience where they are honored and respected for who they are. To help bring this belief to reality, she created the Irth app. With a platform like “Yelp,” you can search for reviews regarding prenatal, postpartum, pediatric, or birth care. Once you have searched, you will see reviews from Black and brown parents that can aid your search for good healthcare. Kimberly has set a new standard for healthcare, focusing on the importance of representation in the navigational process. Irth can be downloaded from the App Store or on Google Play.
Courtney S. Hall – Baby Bump Bliss
Courtney S. Hall earned her undergraduate degree in Social Work from North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University and her master’s degree from the University of South Carolina in Columbia. Courtney is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker Associate, a Certified Birth Doula, and a Certified Mindfulness-Informed Professional. Amidst her passion for social work and mental health, Courtney also has a passion for maternal health and helping couples. She is an advocate as she provides emotional and physical support to families. After experiencing her journey to motherhood, she realized that the mental health of women before, during, and after pregnancy is important. To contribute to the world of maternal health, Courtney designed Bump.Baby.Bliss. 
Based in Greensboro, North Carolina, Bump.Baby.Bliss. is a one-stop shop for all your pre and postpartum needs. The studio offers a comprehensive range of services, including the following: 

2D, 3D, and 4D ultrasounds. 
Early DNA gender testing. 
Doula support. 
Placenta encapsulation. 
Perinatal therapy. 
Childbirth classes. 
Breastfeeding assistance. 

Through her business, Courtney has provided confidence and support for families during all stages of the journey to having children. She has increased accessibility and awareness to compassionate, skilled doula and counseling care. 
Kimberly Durdin and Allegra Hill – Kindred Space LA 
Kimberly Durdin is a Licensed Midwife, Internationally Board-Certified Lactation Consultant, Childbirth Educator, and Doula Trainer. She has over 29 years of experience in her work, but she credits a lot of her learning experiences to her six children and five grandbabies. Over the last 29 years, Kimberly has interwoven her life with the lives of thousands of families throughout New York City, Washington DC Metro Area, and Los Angeles. Her skilled background in providing lactation care, postpartum support, groups, counseling, childbirth education, labor support, and mentorship speaks volumes regarding her impact on the Black maternal health community. Her non-profit, the Birthing People Foundation, empowers people of color by providing free and low-cost education, training, and certification about pregnancy, birth, and postpartum, such as doulas, childbirth educators, lactation consultants, birth assistants, and midwives. With her extensive resume, Kimberly is directly addressing the maternal and infant health disparities in communities of color and restoring awareness and comfortability regarding Black and brown people being wellness providers.
Allegra Hill is a Licensed Midwife, Certified Professional Midwife, and International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant. She began her journey as a doula in 2010. She is the co-owner of the Birthing People Foundation, along with her close friend, Kimberly Durdin. She has trained and mentored birth doulas since 2013. She uses her extensive knowledge and training in nonviolent communication, conflict resolution, early child development, and cultural competency in all areas of her work.
Allegra and Kimberly started Kindred Space LA. Their business is unique and impactful as they provide top-notch midwifery services. They provide families with prenatal and postpartum care and aid in preparing for birth and life with a newborn. Those who choose Kindred Space LA receive excellent care and a warm and welcoming community. Kimberly and Allegra have supported each other through their births and big life milestones, and they have developed a deep sisterhood rooted in love. They share that joy with their clients as they provide comfort and community during the biggest transitions in their lives.
These five entrepreneurs are creating history with their businesses and bridging the gap in maternal healthcare for Black women. These women have been able to understand and create impactful services that uplift and support Black mothers. They are building legacies, and with their contributions, a brighter future for Black maternal health will be a reality.


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