What would it be like if Black mothers felt safe and confident

to make their own birth choices

without oppression and judgement?

Here at HBC, we know that Black women are not broken.
The system is broken.

We Recieved the 2021 Chicago Birth Justice Award!

The Chicago Birth Justice award honors a community member or organization that exemplifies the values of birth justice. Through their work they have helped women and birthing individuals feel empowered during pregnancy, labor, childbirth, and postpartum to make healthy decisions for themselves and their babies. The Chicago Birth Justice award recipient has helped to lead the movement against reproductive oppression.

“Holistic Birth Collective’s most recent legislative project with the Illinois General Assembly establishes a demonstration program to launch in 2023 under which any pregnant person eligible for Medicaid may elect to receive patient-centered care in an at-home setting from a racially and culturally concordant team of doulas and midwives. The 2023 demonstration program will also pilot alternative payment models designed to establish a system of healthcare reimbursement aligned with the demonstrated value of holistic, relationship-based perinatal care.”

facts about black birth

Check Out Our Spot On Streetwise!

Streetwise’s mission is to empower those facing homelessness or at risk of homelessness by providing immediate economic and employment opportunities so individuals can work toward self-sufficiency with dignity. We were honored to be spotlighted in their “Support for Mother’s.”

Check out the full May issue below:

ABOUT HOLISTIC BIRTH COLLECTIVE

Deinstitutionalize childbirth.  Empower community midwives.  Dismantle obstetric racism.  Transform public health research.

Holistic Birth Collective is a Black-led non-profit organization providing community-based (out-of-hospital) perinatal care and planned homebirth, and postpartum services to pregnant and birthing persons who reside on the south side of Chicago. Our mission is simple: to increase the availability and accessibility of person-centered maternity care that is evidence-based and is responsive to the needs of African-American and Black families residing in the Chicago metropolitan area. We believe midwives, when empowered to work in community-based settings, foster health and life in the Black community at large and are a solution to dismantling the structural and medical racism that has been killing Black mothers for more than a century.

Here at HBC, we know that Black women are not broken; the system is broken. We will not tolerate a discourse that pathologizes Black women. Organizations pitching policy interventions that focus on giving Black mothers “education” on making “healthy choices” might be well-intentioned, but they’re missing the point. We need to get to the structural and cultural root of the problem that is killing Black women and that is obstetric racism. 

When researchers actually think to ask American mothers what they would want for their future births, Black/African-American mothers express greater interest in having planned home births than any other racial/ethnic group in the United States (see: the Listening to Mothers Surveys from 2013 and the California-specific iteration from 2018). And yet, Black mothers are significantly less likely than white women to have access to planned homebirth. 

Much of this is attributable to the fact that the majority (over two-thirds) of planned homebirths were paid for out of pocket in the United States from the years 2004-2017. For comparison, only 3% of hospital births in the United States are self-paid. Because Black women are more often dependent on Medicaid or limited private insurance, they are deprived of access to planned homebirths even though the third-party expenditures are almost always lower than for hospital deliveries and controlled studies demonstrate superior maternal outcomes with no negative effect on neonatal outcomes.

Meet Sister Star

Often knows as “Sister Star,” Star August is a Birth Specialist and the creator of Holistic Birth Collective. She is currently based in Chicago where she is advocating for black mothers and babies.

Star has been a Birth Doula, Postpartum Doula and Childbirth Educator for ten years. Since moving to Chicago, she has volunteered with Chicago Volunteer Doulas, begun pursuing a licensure as a Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) and created Holistic Birth Collective. Her dream is to one day open a freestanding birth center that encompasses holistic health to women and their families.
Find out more about Star and Midwifery at our sister website:

What would it be like if Black mothers felt safe and confident

to make their own birth choices

without oppression and judgement?

Here at HBC, we know that
Black women are not broken.
The system is broken.

We Recieved the 2021 Chicago Birth Justice Award!

The Chicago Birth Justice award honors a community member or organization that exemplifies the values of birth justice. Through their work they have helped women and birthing individuals feel empowered during pregnancy, labor, childbirth, and postpartum to make healthy decisions for themselves and their babies.

“Holistic Birth Collective’s most recent legislative project with the Illinois General Assembly establishes a demonstration program to launch in 2023 under which any pregnant person eligible for Medicaid may elect to receive patient-centered care in an at-home setting from a racially and culturally concordant team of doulas and midwives. The 2023 demonstration program will also pilot alternative payment models designed to establish a system of healthcare reimbursement aligned with the demonstrated value of holistic, relationship-based perinatal care.”

facts about black birth

Check Out Our Spot On Streetwise!

Streetwise’s mission is to empower those facing homelessness or at risk of homelessness by providing immediate economic and employment opportunities so individuals can work toward self-sufficiency with dignity. We were honored to be spotlighted in their “Support for Mother’s.”

Check out the full May issue below:

ABOUT HOLISTIC BIRTH COLLECTIVE

Holistic Birth Collective is a Black-led non-profit organization providing community-based (out-of-hospital) perinatal care and planned homebirth, and postpartum services to pregnant and birthing persons who reside on the south side of Chicago. 

Our mission is simple: to increase the availability and accessibility of person-centered maternity care that is evidence-based and is responsive to the needs of African-American and Black families residing in the Chicago metropolitan area. We believe midwives, when empowered to work in community-based settings, foster health and life in the Black community at large and are a solution to dismantling the structural and medical racism that has been killing Black mothers for more than a century.

Here at HBC, we know that Black women are not broken; the system is broken. We will not tolerate a discourse that pathologizes Black women. Organizations pitching policy interventions that focus on giving Black mothers “education” on making “healthy choices” might be well-intentioned, but they’re missing the point. We need to get to the structural and cultural root of the problem that is killing Black women and that is obstetric racism. 

When researchers actually think to ask American mothers what they would want for their future births, Black/African-American mothers express greater interest in having planned home births than any other racial/ethnic group in the United States (see: the Listening to Mothers Surveys from 2013 and the California-specific iteration from 2018). And yet, Black mothers are significantly less likely than white women to have access to planned homebirth. 

Much of this is attributable to the fact that the majority (over two-thirds) of planned homebirths were paid for out of pocket in the United States from the years 2004-2017. For comparison, only 3% of hospital births in the United States are self-paid. Because Black women are more often dependent on Medicaid or limited private insurance, they are deprived of access to planned homebirths even though the third-party expenditures are almost always lower than for hospital deliveries and controlled studies demonstrate superior maternal outcomes with no negative effect on neonatal outcomes.

Meet Sister Star

Often knows as “Sister Star,” Star August is a Birth Specialist and the creator of Holistic Birth Collective. She is currently based in Chicago where she spends her time raising her children and advocating for black mothers and babies.

Star has been a Birth Doula, Postpartum Doula and Childbirth Educator for ten years. Since moving to Chicago, she has volunteered with Chicago Volunteer Doulas, begun pursuing a licensure as a Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) and created Holistic Birth Collective. Her dream is to one day open a freestanding birth center that encompasses holistic health to women and their families. Learn more about Star and Miwifery at our sister website: