Women's eNews is proud to announce that the nonprofit daily news organization has received a $400,000, two-year grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to continue its investigative reporting on the underlying causes for the high African-American maternal and infant mortality rates.
"Our news service is dedicated to issues of particular concern to women and I can't think of a more important issue facing U.S. women today than maternal health," said Rita Henley Jensen, Women's eNews editor in chief. "Women's eNews is delighted to be part of an effort to shift the nation's attention on the health of the country's pregnant women, especially African American women and infants. Maternal health is issue that has been virtually ignored during the national debate over the nation's health care policies. Women's eNews role will be to deliver solid news stories about this crucial public health issue."
The United States women experience one of the highest maternal and infant mortality rates among developing nations. These key indicators of a nation's health are substantially higher for African American women and their families. African American women and their families confront these striking statistics as they form partnerships, become parents and care for their children:
- Black women form 12 percent of the United States' female population but represent nearly half of maternal mortalities.
- African American women are three-to-six times more likely to die during pregnancy and the six weeks after delivery than U.S. white and Latina women. That holds true across levels of income and education. In fact, some studies find middle-income and highly educated African American women at greater risk.
- Compared to any other group of women, black women are least likely to breastfeed a child exclusively at six months, a government target for promoting healthier children. Breastfeeding also reduces a woman's risk of certain forms breast cancers--protection especially important to African American women who are more vulnerable for these types of cancers.
"Women's eNews brings an essential voice to the critical issues associated with too many babies, born too soon and too small, potentially creating lifelong vulnerabilities," says Gail Christopher, vice president for programs with the Kellogg Foundation. "This is an effective channel for raising awareness of strategies for change and improvement."
For more than a year, Women's eNews has been covering the complex and interlocking national and state health policies and cultural influences that have produced this disheartening reality. The news service has also documented the successful strategies to improve the health of African American women and infants. The news service has produced to date 15 news stories and 10 videos, including one that has received more than 5,000 viewers on the Women's eNews YouTube channel.
The read these stories or watch these videos, go to: http://www.womensenews.org/article.cfm?aid=3709
About Women's eNews:
Women's eNews is a prize-winning nonprofit news service supported by its readers and other donors. Launched in 1999, the independent media outlet provides news coverage unavailable anywhere else of substantive issues of particular concern to women and their allies. To date, Women's eNews has won 31 journalism awards. Rita Henley Jensen is founder and editor in chief.
For more information or to inquire about subscribing, permissions to reprint or licensing arrangements please contact Rita Henley Jensen at 212-244-1747 or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the W.K. Kellogg Foundation:
Established in 1930, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation supports children, families and communities as they strengthen and create conditions that propel vulnerable children to achieve success as individuals and as contributors to the larger community and society. Grants are concentrated in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, and in southern Africa.