Who We Serve
The Alaska Native Birthworkers Community serves self-identified Alaska Native and Indigenous families birthing in Alaska, and Indigenous birthworkers in Alaska.
We welcome birth support requests from our community, and we will use the following criteria to prioritize support:
The birthing person identifies as Native or Indigenous AND one or more of the following applies:
The birthing person is leaving their home community in rural Alaska to give birth, OR
The birthing person has limited or no local support, OR
The birthing person is seeking cultural connections, OR
The person seeking support will be giving birth for the first time, OR
The birthing person has past trauma or any health risk factor, (for example a high-risk medical condition, history of trauma, mental health disorder, high-risk social situation).
If you are unsure about your eligibility for our services, please complete a form or e-mail us and we will follow up with you. We are also happy to help make referrals to other doula services.
We understand and acknowledge that all birthing families deserve to feel supported, well cared for, and full of the information they need to make confident choices around reproductive health, birthing and parenthood. We hope that the work we do will have systemic impact for all parents, however, our programming and services are focused specifically on Alaska Native birthing families and Indigenous families living in Alaska, and Indigenous birthworkers in Alaska. We do this because we are Alaska Native Peoples living on Alaska Native lands, because we value culturally matched care, and because as a grassroots led effort that began with 100% volunteerism, we need to be strategic in how we focus our time and resources for the greatest impact within our Indigenous communities.
Because colonization has disrupted transfer of Indigenous knowledge and identity systems, some people may be wondering if they identify as Indigenous or not. We can not answer this question for you. We encourage you to turn to your family, Elders, and community to help you figure this out for yourself before engaging in this space.
There are many Indigenous ways of knowing and being that can not all be clarified here. To help though, here are a few points summarized from a factsheet by the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues that may serve as a guide:
Reciprocal relationship to the lands and waters you come from
Family lineage/descendancy from a pre-colonial/pre-settler (Indigenous) society
Grounded in Indigenous culture and language of your territory
Accepted and claimed by your Indigenous community as their member
Committed to the wellbeing of your Indigenous Peoples, community, and the lands and waters you originate from
Please understand that our services are intended to address a specific need in Indigenous communities and we are working to create a culturally safe, healing and intimate space designed by Indigenous Peoples for Indigenous Peoples. We thank you for honoring and supporting this space.
If you are not Alaska Native or Indigenous but would like to support the Alaska Native Birthworkers Community, we invite you to learn about alternate ways of supporting our work.