The International Cesarean Awareness Network is powered by the selfless efforts of our numerous volunteers. We cannot thank our dedicated volunteers enough for their cooperation and service in assisting ICAN with accomplishing its mission. In an effort to acknowledge some of our amazing volunteers who work tirelessly behind the scenes to offer support, education, and advocacy for the mothers in their area, we have created a Volunteer of the Month announcement to highlight our supporters.
ICAN is pleased to announce Amanda Beck, ICAN of Vancouver, as the September 2017 Volunteer of the Month!
What led you to ICAN?
I discovered ICAN online during my second pregnancy, after my first cesarean. I was researching VBACs and was able to join the online national community. After my second child was born, ICAN of Central Arkansas opened locally to me and I was an active participant in the group for a few years until I moved to Vancouver, Washington. I’ve actively participated in ICAN of Portland and ICAN of Vancouver, becoming a Chapter Co-Leader this year, as well as volunteering on the national level.
What motivates you as a volunteer?
My cesarean journey has been difficult and confusing. I was alone with my thoughts and feelings for so long and didn’t have a supportive community at first. Now that I have found my tribe of women who are further along the path than I am, I feel it is necessary for me to reach behind and pull up those women who are following me down this road of cesarean recovery. If I can show one woman that she is not alone, that she is heard and supported on her journey, then I will feel accomplished as an ICAN volunteer.
What moment makes you proudest as an ICAN volunteer? What moment was hardest for you?
I am most proud of those moments when a mother tells me I’ve given her the right information to help her. I was a library assistant in my pre-children life and finding valuable information is something I still strive to do.
The hardest moments are when cesarean-only or CBAC moms choose not to remain in our group because they do not feel included. I work hard to include everyone, no matter their choices or journey because I strongly believe we need all stories and all paths represented for a strong, united ICAN. I know that each mother has to make her own choice about participating in ICAN or not but it does feel like a failure and that’s hard.
What are your other professions and passions outside of ICAN?
I am a homeschooling mom to four wonderful children, ages 3 to 10. In addition to keeping them active, growing, and learning, I fit in time to knit, sew, embroider, crochet – all the needlework arts! I also attempt to read a chapter or two of a new book every day, though that’s not always easy.
Thank you for all you do, Amanda!