Gina Dacosta-Partera, chapter leader of ICAN Norte-Centro Puerto Rico, has been named the 2014 MANA Sapling Award winner by the Midwife Alliance of North America. She will be officially recognized at the annual convention which takes place this month in St. Louis, Missouri.
The MANA Sapling Award was created in order to honor new midwives who showed promise in the field of midwifery as well as generosity, leadership, and initiative in the field. Hailing from the city of Morovis, Puerto Rico, Gina found ICAN two years ago when she was invited to a meeting as a midwife who assisted mothers seeking a homebirth after cesarean. After recognizing a need to expand the reach of ICAN into other surrounding areas, Gina decided to become a volunteer for ICAN and ICAN Norte-Centro Puerto Rico was born.
When asked how being an ICAN chapter leader has influenced her work as a midwife, she says, “As an ICAN leader it is amazing that I get to educate women and families about birth choices in terms of VBAC and preventing unnecessary cesareans. I have seen an improvement in outcomes. I have also seen a change in women’s attitudes toward their prenatal care, who to choose as a provider, etc. I am very happy that I get to reach, support, and educate many women during their processes of pregnancy, labor, and postpartum. This is very fulfilling! I wish we could reach more women, but little by little we are experiencing positives changes!”
Congratulations on your award and thank you for all that you do to help fulfill the mission of ICAN!