Philadelphia church hopes to help save moms' lives amid rising maternal mortality rate across city

The maternal mortality rate is a growing problem in Philadelphia.

On Saturday, organizations came together at Enon Tabernacle Church to in an effort to save local moms with a common theme of community and the sense of a village having each other's backs.

Expectant mothers, current mothers and dads were made to feel like they can get through this wonderful journey by offering physical resources, such as bags filled with diapers, wipes and vitamins.

Ebony Butler, a mother of a newborn, is grateful for the second annual Black Maternal Health Summit.

"Giving us the resources we might not have," said Butler.  "A day of relaxation getting to meet other mothers, midwives, doalas."

The United States has become a leader in maternal mortality rates, but organizers like Latoya Dennis are working to change that.

"We’re certifying doulas, so if they are interested in becoming a doula we’d love to certify in Philly and every other city we go to," Dennis said.  "It’s critically important for us to save lives. Our initiative is for black American Indian, and Alaskan Native moms."

The full-day event was filled with guest speakers, resource booths, health screenings, and some pampering and fun in the form of mocktails and fun, relaxing spaces for moms.

Alexia Doumbouya with Cocolife.Black talked about how preventable these deaths are if women are able to get to know about the resources available.

"We even have a respite room which is really heightening awareness around mental particularly PMAD," said Doumbouya.  "Parental and postpartum mood and anxiety disorder. What we’re here to do today is elevate."

The Rev. Dr. Alyn Waller said Enon Tabernacle Church prides itself on taking care of one’s health, as well as one’s spirit.

"Our women suffer because of bad diagnosis, disparities that exist anyhow within the medical experience," said the Rev. Waller. "It’s important that we focus on our children and our mothers."

Hope that every mom is able to deliver and raise their child in a happy and healthy way, so every mother can enjoy the experience.

"Once I saw my baby come out and heard it cry, and I was just like this is God, this is amazing," said Butler.

To learn more about the event and resources, check out CocoLife and Just Serve.