When I was pregnant with my twins in the early 2000’s, finding resources related to pregnancy and lactation was difficult and I struggled to connect with the resources that I was provided because they spoke to a culture that wasn’t relatable to my lifestyle or people that looked like me. This is one of the many reasons that I am a Lactation Support Peer Counselor. I am blessed to have the opportunity to provide support, education, and resources to the Pacific Islander community in a style that they can relate to, and by a person who looks like them.
Open Arms Perinatal Services recognizes the third week in August as Asian Pacific Islander Breastfeeding Week August is National Breastfeeding Month and while the second week has been recognized as Native Breastfeeding Week and the fourth week as Black Breastfeeding Week, the Asian Pacific Islander (API) community has not been recognized. Open Arms wants to [...]
Elizabeth Montez - My Lactation Journey Nursing my babies has been inextricably linked to my experience navigating life as an Anishinaabe/Latinx person in a colonized America. With my first baby, I was still trying to compartmentalize myself and identity. Every part of me belonged in separate boxes: my motherhood, my heritage, my professional [...]
Dear friends, partners, and community, I just celebrated my fourth birthday as Executive Director of Open Arms. Time is passing so quickly. I often think that Open Arms was nearing adolescence when I came through the doors. I feel a lot like a mother watching my own child in the midst of her own growth and [...]
Open Arms ensures doulas are provided and reach the right communities. We also help other community-based organizations have a seat at the table to grow and serve their communities. In preparation for this visit, we shared this 1-sheet overview of our programs and impact, and Dila, our Executive Director, led an engaging live session with an emphasis on outcomes.
Dear SVP, We’ll make this short. And sweet. We heard you might be cutting the cord with us. We’re not ready for that. We want delayed cord cutting … like how about another 5 years of partnership? Our relationship was filled with bliss (and accrual accounting), and we just aren’t ready for it to be over. So we are writing this letter to let you know, we ARE NOT breaking up.
Suzanne found her way to the Open Arms community over a decade ago through a board member introduction and attending our 2009 luncheon. She has lived in the neighborhood for twenty years and has always thought it appropriate that Open Arms is part of the “beloved community” formed by El Centro de la Raza, where Open Arms has had its main office for over 22 years.
Parenting is complicated at any stage of life; there is a constant barrage of information in books, and blogs all trying to tell new parents the “best” way to parent. I am a first-generation American, and you better believe that my mother and the rest of my extended family have just as much Mexican parenting advice they so generously and voluntarily share with me.
My grandmother is 93 years old. She's still active, still known to talk smack, sit down and proceed to beat us at whatever game we're playing. She's amazing. We took some time to talk about her life experiences, what it was like for her growing up in Oklahoma. Something she said really stuck with me.
Dear friends, partners, and community, This summer, I passed an important milestone; I marked my third year as executive director of Open Arms. It’s hard to convey how much I have changed, and how much Open Arms has changed, during this time. Three years ago, I was a first-time ED trying to fill some very [...]