Uzazi Village is a nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating maternal and infant health inequity among Black and Brown communities. Through education, support, and advocacy, Uzazi Village works to improve perinatal health in the Kansas City community and around the country. We work every day to build a respectful and supportive healthcare system that fosters equitable and sustainable outcomes in maternal and infant health.
WE BELIEVE THAT…
Community engagement is essential to creating positive, long-term, and sustainable change in family health
Respecting the dignity of every individual is an essential part of building a healthy and supportive community
Healthcare is an essential human right that should be accessible and affordable for every community member
Empowerment comes with personal ownership of family health outcomes through education and community support
is a hallmark of the ways in which we move in health care and health advocacy and health policy. We will be true first and foremost to our own ideals of accountability and responsibility to ourselves and our community. We will move in truth and with transparency, with vulnerability and authenticity. We will be who we are, no more, no less, because who we are deserves excellence in all that we say and do.
is a value that demands change for the better. Our justice in healthcare is long overdue. We cannot depend on a system that was designed to either ignore us or discount us. We will settle for neither. We will create our own just systems while we fight to dismantle unjust ones.
means we will take up space and provide safe adjacent systems for our perinatal clients, staff and community members. We understand the complexities of the Black lived experience and offer services, programs, and care models that are culturally specific and congruent. We value freedom from racism and white supremacy in clinical care and health policy and offer our clients autonomy for their own self-determination. ‘For us, by us’ is our rallying cry for liberation.
is a core value that allows us to focus not only the many harms that have been done to us historically and continue to today that range from the interpersonal to the systemic , for one cannot solve a problem that one does not acknowledge. We want to go farther than a focus on harms to a focus on self-healing from the outer body to the inner soul. This healing is not contingent on the actions or acknowledgements of the perpetrators of harm, but on our own relationship to ourselves.
We will set our boundaries, create relationships based on earned trust, protect our own spaces and focus on relational rather than transactional health care delivery. We will uplift self-care and community-care and be scrupulous in our pursuit of a balanced and healthy life in all quadrants of the lived experience.
defines care that is in alignment with cultural knowing and celebrating our heritage and identity as peoples of the Black diaspora. For too long our culture and ways of being have been defined by others as deficit-based, or substandard. We reject all mischaracterizations of who we are and embrace the legacy of strength and dignity that our ancestors built for us. We are survivors of a 400-year smear campaign standing to say — NO MORE. We will tell our own stories and define for ourselves who and what we are. We will create care models that fit us and elevate our way of life and health.
At Uzazi Village, our goals are strongly tied to values of integrity, cultural adaptability, compassion, and community involvement.
OUR GOALS INCLUDE:
Decreased low birth weight
Increased breastfeeding initiation and duration
Increased interpregnancy intervals
Improved management of pregnancy complications
Improved efficacy of pregnancy self-care
Improved quality and access to healthcare
Restoration of the community midwife and doula
Increased numbers of people of color entering the perinatal professions
WE WORK TO MEET OUR GOALS BY…
Understanding the healthcare gaps that affect our families and incubating innovative models in healthcare delivery to meet those needs
Nurturing, educating, supporting, and advocating for Black and Brown childbearing women and their families under all circumstances
Inviting our community members to be a part of their own problem solving process, encouraging them to be a part of the solution
Introducing community conversations that reframe the social, personal, and political determinants of health in Black and Brown communities
Ensuring that the next generation of birth workers of color reflects the values of the community and population being served
Prioritizing and focusing on healthcare improvements through partnerships, community collaboratives, research, and think tank building