Birth Zone

Birth Zone provides prenatal information events for pregnant families and birth professionals in Cam

Operating as usual

March for Midwives protest in Cambridge over ‘unsafe’ conditions and pay 24/11/2022

March for Midwives protest in Cambridge over ‘unsafe’ conditions and pay

“I’m here today as a midwife because the system I currently work in is unsafe for the women and babies that we care for, and is unsafe for the workers within it. It’s getting worse, and with the increased mortality rate I don’t know why more people aren’t out on the street” - Fia, an NHS midwife in Cambridgeshire

March for Midwives protest in Cambridge over ‘unsafe’ conditions and pay The protest galvanised many others to action along the way

Photos from Birth Zone's post 21/11/2022

March With Midwives Cambridge took to the streets yesterday to support midwives as part of the nationwide March With Midwives UK campaign.

The government will tell you they are investing millions, which sounds reassuring. What they won't tell you is that for every 30 midwives that start their training, 29 will leave or never enter the workforce. Why is that? The system is broken and toxic, that's why.



Look East - Evening News: 20/11/2022 20/11/2022

Look East - Evening News: 20/11/2022

Thank you to everyone who joined a March With Midwives UK protest across the country today. I stood with those in Cambridge demanding fair working conditions for NHS midwives and safe birthing conditions for m/others and babies.

The money the government will tell you they’re putting into training midwives isn’t enough, when for every 30 student midwives entering, 29 will leave the profession. The system is broken, the culture is toxic, and enough is enough.

Look East - Evening News: 20/11/2022 The latest news, sport and weather for the East of England.

Women Worldwide – Open Textbook 23/05/2022

Women Worldwide – Open Textbook

Thank you to Susan Shaw and Janet Lockhart for inviting me to contribute to the second edition of Women Worldwide: Transnational Feminist Perspectives. This book is now available as an open-access textbook for those studying Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. What a fantastic free resource!

Take a look at my short sidebars on the following topics:
- Help for Survivors of Birth Trauma
- Vaginal Birth after C-Section
- Maternal Racism and the Benefits of Doulas
- Obstetric Violence
- How Is Doxxing Used as a Tactic of Misogyny?
- Effects of Later Marriage and Childbearing in Japan

Women Worldwide – Open Textbook Book Description: During the past few years, we’ve witnessed how interconnected our world is. These instances of global interconnection—both positive and negative—have differing impacts on people based on gender while also creating and reinforcing the ways people experience gender. We see that...

Timeline photos 16/02/2022

Professor Melissa Cheyney is a highly engaging speaker. This talk will be so valuable.


Uplift Lab co-director Melissa Cheyney is participating in the Integrating the Art and Science of Birth conference, which opens on Tuesday, February 22. You can find her on the following panels:
🌌 Patient/Client Centered Perinatal Health Team
🌌 Ensuring Continuity of Care
🌌 Doulas: Essential Care Providers in Perinatal Health

More information on the conference below the break! ⤵️
→ For birth workers and birth change makers seeking to provide evidence-based, integrated maternity care in their communities. ←
→ Para quienes trabajan en profesiones del parto y quienes procuran cambios en el parto que desean que el cuidado materno en sus comunidades sea uno basado en evidencia e integrado. ←
The only international birth conference bringing together:
✅ The human right to client-centered care
✅ The influences that impact the system of care
✅ Collaborative care
La única conferencia que incluye:
✅ Derechos a un cuidado integrado
✅ Influencias que impactan el sistema de cuidado
✅ Cuidado colaborativo en todo contexto
Virtual and In-Person Options Available
Opciones virtuales y en persona disponibles
Register now:
Registarse para la conferencia:

[Image description: a purple-toned asset with a white logo for Integrating the Art and Science of Birth at the top, above an image of Melissa Cheyney on the left and white text that starts with "Panelists" and introduces "Dr. Melissa Cheyney, MA, CPM, LDM, PhD, Professor at Oregon State University" in light purple text, with a runner at the bottom with a light purple background that says "REGISTER:"]


Sunday, 13th of March - March With Midwives UK

Have you heard the news? We're on the March again.
13,000 people on the 13th March in London & Manchester. Get the date in your diary and follow us for more updates.

Research Interview - Victoria Keenan 21/12/2021

Research Interview - Victoria Keenan

If you are a midwife, nurse, or obstetrician who has worked alongside a Community Doula Program doula in Oregon (USA), and you would be happy to have a brief research interview, please click the link below for more information and to book your slot.

Please share widely!

Research Interview - Victoria Keenan Victoria Keenan is available for remote interviews on Zoom between Monday 10th of January and Friday 4th February 2022 (5 am to 3 pm Pacific time, 7 days a week).Please select a time that suits you, or contact Victoria ([email protected]) to request alternative times/dates.If there are any issues with

Timeline photos 07/12/2021

This event looks like a great opportunity - 3 pm UK time today.

Learn from expert panelists working toward achieving perinatal care equity for Black birthing people, including a bonus interactive discussion where participants can dialogue with panelists about ways to promote change.

The Making Respectful Care a Reality through Action and Advocacy webinar– hosted by The White Ribbon Alliance, The National Association to Advance Black Birth- NAABB, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and the DC Mayor's Office of Women's Policy & Initiatives, with Mamatoto Village, Inc. and the DC Primary Care Association - DCPCA– will take place tomorrow, Tuesday, December 7 at 7 a.m. PT.

Register now →

[Image description: in a doctor's office, a Black pregnant person with dark hair pulled back into a low bun, wearing a pink t-shirt, rests one hand on their belly with a placid expression on their face, facing a white doctor with brown hair in a high bun who is wearing a white lab coat and holding a black tablet device in their hands, whose back is facing the camera vantage point]

AAA Community Doula Program Presentation 2021 25/11/2021

AAA Community Doula Program Presentation 2021

This year I presented at the American Anthropological Association's annual conference with Professor Melissa Cheyney, Ph.D. CPM, LDM (Oregon State University) and Dr Holly Horan (University of Alabama) in the Reproductive Care, Expertise, and Vulnerabilities panel.

Our presentation was called "Finding our way in a system not built for us”: Staying with the trouble in a community doula program. We explored why understanding the experiences of doulas working within the Community Doula Program is so important to its success and our methods of investigation.

Here is a link to the video (unfortunately I missed the introduction!):

AAA Community Doula Program Presentation 2021 “Finding our way in a system not built for us”: Staying with the trouble in a community doula program.Presented by Professor Melissa Cheyney, Victoria Keenan...

Sign the Petition 15/11/2021

Sign the Petition

Whether or not you will be attending a vigil on Sunday 21st November, if you are wondering what more you can do to support midwives and, why not sign this petition?

I'm looking forward to seeing some of you at the vigil on Parker's Piece at 2 pm on the day!

Sign the Petition Support urgent government investment into maternity services to solve the staffing crisis

March with midwives locations - Google My Maps 13/11/2021

March with midwives locations - Google My Maps

Find your local vigil to attend at 2 pm on Sunday November 21st.

I hope to see some of you on Parker’s Piece in Cambridge .

March with midwives locations - Google My Maps Vigils will be held at locations across the UK on Sunday 21st November at 2pm - please join your nearest one to show support

March With Midwives — ReproSoc 12/11/2021

March With Midwives — ReproSoc

Why should you attend a March With Midwives UK vigil on November 21st at 2 pm? Read my blog for the Reproductive Sociology Research Group (ReproSoc) based at the University of Cambridge to find out.

If you're local to Cambridge, join us on Parker's Piece at 2pm on Sunday 21st. Midwives, women, pregnant people, their babies, and their families, deserve better.

March With Midwives — ReproSoc Victoria Keenan, November 2021 “The last birth I was a part of was a day of no breaks (now just standard) and when the father offered me a Percy pig I cried (thank you, mask).  I was so hungry, tired, thirsty, my back was killing me and it was his kindness to think about me in that momen

Photos from happystride's post 17/07/2021

For pregnant peeps who keep fit, whether that’s yoga, running, or you just love leggings: may I introduce to you, the happystride ‘pregging’!!

It’s fantastic that you can get practical clothing in super fun prints. These are so cheery that you can’t help but smile when you see them!

Maternity Underwear & Breastfeeding Tops | Modibodi UK 10/07/2021

Maternity Underwear & Breastfeeding Tops | Modibodi UK

Oh my word!! This is what the world has been waiting for!!!

Maternity Underwear & Breastfeeding Tops | Modibodi UK Shop Modibodi Maternity collection, including maternity underwear that gives you comfy, sustainable support to protect you from unwanted leaks in your pregnancy

Yoga sequence - preparation for labour and birth using biomechanics 18/06/2021

Yoga sequence - preparation for labour and birth using biomechanics

Thank you, Yoga with Tessa, for this great free yoga sequence which uses knowledge of biomechanics to help prepare your body for birth.

Yoga sequence - preparation for labour and birth using biomechanics Tessa takes you through a sequence with Diana, 38 weeks pregnant. The positions and movements are chosen based on biomechanics for birth: practicing which la...

Timeline photos 12/05/2021

Oh my goodness, how beautiful is this?! And it's called 'Rainbow Baby' heart!!!!


Watch Lorraine Pryce explain why she believes this inquiry is so important.

Find out more and give your evidence here

If you are currently pregnant, remember that maternity services are aware of these issues and working to improve care. If you have any concerns, do talk to your midwife for reassurance and to find out what your local hospital is doing.

World-first study links birth interventions and long-term childhood illness 29/03/2021

World-first study links birth interventions and long-term childhood illness

I share this research because it's important to recognise that when birthing people want a birth free from intervention it isn't selfish. They aren't putting themselves having a 'nice' experience above the safety of their baby.

World-first study links birth interventions and long-term childhood illness A team of leading international researchers has discovered significant links between medical interventions used in the birthing process – such as caesarean section and induction – and a child’s long-term health.

New site 26/01/2021

New site

This is an amazing source of peer support for Mums in the Cambridge area:

New site Information about mental health support for new mums in Cambridge UK

Timeline photos 24/12/2020

The gift of information is always an excellent choice!

Uplift Lab collaborator Dr. Jonathan Snowden was featured along with Dr. Cecelia Tomori and Dr. Sekeita Lewis-Johnson in this Q&A on COVID vaccines for lactation providers. Love the vermin analogy! This recording will only be available for one week, so please access ASAP.


Happy holidays, all! I love that vernix is described here as festive frosting!

Take care of yourselves and your families and see you in 2021.

🤍 Vernix Caseosa 🤍

Look at this incredible festive frosting on this little newborn!

Vernix caseosa is a white, creamy, naturally occurring biofilm covering the skin of the fetus during the last trimester of pregnancy. Vernix coating on the neonatal skin protects the newborn skin and facilitates extra-uterine adaptation of skin in the first postnatal week if not washed away after birth. It consists of water-containing corneocytes embedded in a lipid matrix. The strategic location of the vernix on the fetal skin surface suggests participation in multiple overlapping functions required at birth, such as barrier to water loss, temperature regulation, and innate immunity.

Image by

Photos from Ely Baby Bank's post 08/12/2020

If there’s anything you need, you might want to try the Ely Baby Bank. Everything has been donated with love to be passed from one family to another and it’s eco friendly!

How Inuit Parents Teach Kids To Control Their Anger 20/10/2020

How Inuit Parents Teach Kids To Control Their Anger

We can learn so much from the lifeways of Indigenous peoples.

Do you think this approach to parenting could be beneficial?

How Inuit Parents Teach Kids To Control Their Anger At the top of the world, the Inuit culture has developed a sophisticated way to sculpt kids' behavior without yelling or scolding. Could discipline actually be playful?


A review of 41 research studies has shown that "suspected LGA" (or being told that your baby is bigger than average), is only weakly predictive of the risk of shoulder dystocia and that routine ultrasound to check the size of a baby in the third trimester could do more harm than good.
Researchers looked at these studies becuase there is a growing trend towards recommending induction of labour for a variety of reasons, even though there isn't always good evidence to support this. Induction also carries risks and side effects of its own, and many women who experience induction of labour are not happy with the experience. This is especially the case at the moment, when many are still being told that they cannot have partners with them until they are in established labour. With induction, it can take up to three days for labour to become established, especially in first-time mums.
This review looked at whether identifying larger than average babies by ultrasound was an effective way of predicting problems at birth, notably shoulder dystocia. They found that, although universal third-trimester ultrasound screening will result in more women being told that their babies are larger-than-average, it will not have a clinically significant effect at predicting shoulder dystocia.
The authors of the review, "recommend caution prior to introducing universal third-trimester screening for macrosomia, as it would increase the rates of intervention, with potential iatrogenic harm, without clear evidence that it would reduce neonatal morbidity.
The full review can be seen at
It's important to weigh up ALL the pros and cons of induction of labour before deciding what is right for you and your baby.
There's loads more info on induction and other birth-related decisions at

Timeline photos 08/09/2020

If you are considering a water birth, the evidence supports you.

A reminder that, earlier this year, expert researchers at Oxford Brookes University brought together research on childbirth, birth setting and the use of water immersion in labour and shared key points which highlighted the safety and benefits of the use of water for labour and birth, during and beyond the coronavirus pandemic.
Their points included that:
Water immersion for healthy women is associated with a number of beneficial maternal outcomes with no known adverse risks to the neonate.
COVID-19 is not a waterborne virus, therefore, the water environment dilutes respiratory droplet and faecal contamination potential.
In the Coronavirus context, water immersion presents a lower risk of contamination risk for midwives compared with bed birth because it promotes the use of social distancing without interrupting normal midwifery care. Burns et al (2020)
The authors also noted that:
"The birthing pool environment presents a natural barrier between the woman and her midwife.
Supporting women in the water reduces droplet, aerosol and faecal contamination, presenting a low-risk transmission activity for the Coronavirus.
Water immersion for healthy women is associated with a number of beneficial maternal outcomes with no known adverse risks to the neonate.
For primiparous women, birthing in midwifery-led settings (AMU/FMU or home) water immersion reduces transfer rate with the greatest benefit seen at FMU.
Water immersion for labour and/or birth should be supported and encouraged as an effective method of analgesia."
Burns E, Feeley C, Venderlaan J et al (2020). Coronavirus COVID-19: Supporting healthy pregnant women to safely give birth. Oxford: Oxford Brookes University.
Loads more birth information at

Timeline photos 07/09/2020

This is such a great program which has a real impact on the mental and physical health of the doulas and birthing people involved in it. This Labor Day, please support this program so it can continue to support the community!

We believe that all families deserve to have doula support before, during, and after giving birth.

And we believe that it matters that a doula is individually matched to each person's unique needs and preferences.

Thanks to the amazing Community Doula Program doulas, families in our area that receive Medicaid can access doula care, free of charge. Doulas - who are recruited from the communities they serve - deliver comprehensive care in eight different languages.

This Labor Day, you can help expand the number of culturally- and linguistically-matched doulas in our community. If you can, please consider giving today:

Timeline photos 27/08/2020

Go Black mamas/parents feeding their babies!


By our histories and by the truths we know from living, our possibilities are greater than any imagination.

For all the days that have felt hopeless, we invite you to enter a period of nourishment to revive.

Where there has been loss, grief and uncertainty, our restoration is key to being present and imagining healthy futures.

And all through , we reclaim our time, lives and families.

Let’s gooooooo!


Trailer Premiere: Bookmarks on Netflix featuring Sulwe!

Kids love stories that reflect them and the world around them. I can't wait to see these storytellers in action!

Photos from Ely Baby Bank's post 03/08/2020

What a lovely way to support parents in the community, especially in these difficult times. Give what you can, receive what you need.

Alanis Morissette: Ablaze (TV Debut) 02/08/2020

Alanis Morissette: Ablaze (TV Debut)

Parents will feel this on so many levels...

Alanis Morissette: Ablaze (TV Debut) Musical guest Alanis Morissette performs “Ablaze” with a special cameo from her daughter for The Tonight Show. The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. Stream...

Timeline photos 27/07/2020

Get those happy hormones going, people!

Which of these activities will you do today to up your happiness hormones? I'm going to exercise in the sun with my dog. And probably eat a lot of chocolate, too.

Photos from Milton Country Park's post 14/07/2020

If you know of a young person who might benefit from some support, here is an initiative that is available near Cambridge.

Timeline photos 11/07/2020

Congratulations Jennie Joseph!

Repost from

Congrats to ✨Sister on the opening of Commonsense Childbirth School of Midwifery! Sis is dope! Give her allll of her flowers NOW! 🙌🏾🙌🏾🙌🏾

Access open now! Infant Microbiome FREE mini-course. 1 CPD HOUR & 1 L-CERP 07/07/2020

Access open now! Infant Microbiome FREE mini-course. 1 CPD HOUR & 1 L-CERP

Microbirth's FREE mini-course for parents and birth workers alike will help you understand the infant microbiome.

Available until 29th July. Enroll here >>>>

Approved for 1 L-CERP (IBLCE) and 1 CPD HOUR (ACM)
Accepted by IBLCE, ALPP, ACM, NMC, DONA International, CAPPA, ICEA, Lamaze International and more!

✅ Features 7 TOP professors
✅ Explains why vaginal birth and exclusive breastfeeding are so important to a childs health.
✅ Approved for 1 CPD HOUR (ACM) & 1 L-CERP (IBLCE)
✅ Available until 29th July
✅ Over 20,000 health professionals have taken this free mini-course!
✅ It's 100% FREE!

"This is a must-watch. My mind is blown away by the amazing information"

Access open now! Infant Microbiome FREE mini-course. 1 CPD HOUR & 1 L-CERP Access open now! Infant Microbiome FREE mini-course. 1 CPD HOUR & 1 L-CERP

Videos (show all)

Fifi's Lego Minifig Birth Reenactment
Victoria Keenan - Hypnobirthing Practitioner, Dubai.
Waves of Relaxation







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