ICAN is excited to announce Maria Petagna as our newest chapter leader! She has completed training and will be leading ICAN of Central and Southern New Hampshire!
How did you find out about ICAN? What drew you to our organization?
Another doula suggested we start a chapter for the region, since NH is underserved. I hadn’t heard of ICAN until then, but given my own birth experiences was immediately drawn to it.
What part of being an ICAN Chapter Leader are your most excited about and why?
All of it! I think I’m most excited about the people I will meet and the things we will accomplish together, big and small.
What do you wish other people knew about ICAN?
That we are not anti-cesarean, but rather pro-informed consent.
What would you say are some of your strongest beliefs about cesarean/VBAC awareness?
I believe that we need to educate both mothers and practitioners if we are ever going to change the culture. And we need to all work together.
How would someone describe you?
Hahahaha! That depends on who you ask and in what capacity they know me! It’s hard to answer, but many would probably agree that I am passionate and strong.
Please share a little about yourself (ideas: your education or other background/ career/ family/ hobbies).
I’m originally from New York City, got a B.S. in Nutrition (eventually) from NYU, and used that to help start a restaurant which I ran successfully for 7 years. In that time I had two children (both boys). The first was a CS, the other an unaugmented, unmedicated, uncomplicated doula-assisted VBAC that I fought like hell for. We moved to NH, and the political climate here really inspired me to do more than just march in demonstrations and help get out the vote only once every 4 years. I finally got the courage to follow my heart and start training to become a birth doula. Divorce threw a monkey wrench into that, and therefore I have little time for the hobbies I love: writing, reading, knitting, jigsaw puzzles, yoga, spending time with friends, and spending time outdoors. But I do make time for the causes I believe in and continue to take baby steps towards my bigger goals.
QUESTIONS ABOUT YOUR CHAPTER
Where is your chapter (region)? What areas does your chapter serve?
Concord, Manchester, Nashua and surrounding areas.
If you could change one thing about the birth climate in your area, what would it be?
I want to see NH be a front runner in bringing down CS rates nationally.
What is the best thing about the birth climate in your area?
“Live Free or Die” is our state’s motto. This ranges from not having to wear a helmet when you ride a motorcycle, to choosing where you give birth. The state has a midwifery council. Midwives and hospitals have largely amicable relationships and home births are probably more common than most places.
Any other details you’d like us to share, just let us know!
You Are Beautiful! <3