“Kiki” was called to midwifery after the home birth of her own son in 1999. Recognizing the tradition of midwifery, Kiki chose the apprenticeship model of education and briefly trained with her own California home birth midwives. She quickly developed a passion and respect for the intimacy of individualized in-home care. She knew by the age of 20 that she would eventually provide this radical yet completely intuitive model of maternity care to women who knew little about it.
In 2001, she enrolled in the International School of Midwifery in Miami Florida, directed by Shari Daniels. There she attended close to 300 births and completed the North American Registry of Midwives (NARM) requirements for Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) and became licensed in both California and Florida. She has supported women and families as a childbirth educator, Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC), Montrice and Postpartum Doula after cesarean section. She is proud to have served as a Midwife in birth centers completed owned and operated by Licensed Midwives such as The Birth Place in Oakland CA, The Miami Maternity Center and The Hollywood Birth Center.
Her diverse experiences have afforded her opportunities both abroad and in the US that have strengthened her commitment to narrowing the racial and cultural gap within the natural birth community. She states “My experiences have affirmed for me that all women, wherever they may give birth, are midwives in their own right and capable of directing their own care.” She believes in a women’s right to create the birth she deserves.
Brandi Shamsid-Deen’s life path started off typical…She grew up with a passion for medicine and always told her family that she would be a doctor. At some point in her studies she decided to alter her path slightly and pursue a nursing degree in Labor & Deliver to ensure that she would have more hands on experience with her patients. During this time she had her own both enlightening and empowering birth experiences. They became her driving force behind educating herself regarding any and all things related to birth so that she could provide the best possible support to mothers.
While still in school, she decided to train as a Doula and was further exposed to more hospital based births, eventually finding that hospital based birth was not her cup of tea. She discovered that birth did NOT have to be neither a medically driven experience nor condition; thus changing her path yet again. She feels blessed to have found Mama Sarahn whom took her under her wing and allowed her to apprentice under her watchful and guiding hands.
Brandi has since enrolled in Ancient Art Midwifery Institute’s Advanced Midwifery Program and has also trained as a Childbirth Educator. She also holds current certifications in Neonatal Resuscitation and Child/Adult CPR. She is a member of ICTC (International Center for Traditional Childbearing), DONA (Doula’s of North America), MANA (Midwives Alliance of North America) and GMA (Georgia Midwifery Association).
Brandi believes that all mothers deserve encouragement, care and nurturing throughout their pregnancies and especially during labor and birth. They deserve the chance to trust their bodies and the RIGHT to have their best birth and she is humbly honored to be a part of their journey and the Birth in the Tradition team. http://www.wombansright.com/
Sekesa Berry has an AS in Health Administration and currently works as a Certified Lactation Consultant. She has also worked as a WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counselor for over three years. However, Sekesa holds a passion for working with expectant families as a Certified Doula and Childbirth Educator.
She received her original Doula training through DONA and has been serving her community as a Doula for over seven years. In which time she has dedicated numerous hours volunteering at local libraries, community centers and department stores such as Babies ‘R’ Us, sharing her knowledge of breastfeeding and childbirth education with expectant families.
Sekesa is a mother of four beautiful children, two of which were birthed at home. These home birth experiences has served as a catalyst for her journey into midwifery. “Since the age of 13 I have always felt the call to midwifery. I didn’t have a title for the work until I birthed my second child, which is when my journey towards midwifery truly began. I believe that every pregnant and laboring woman should have all of the care and support she needs.” http://www.lovechildmidwifery.com