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July 8, 2019

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Expanding the World of Midwifery

We are excited to announce Mercedes Synder as the recipient of this years Ayanna Ade Black Student Midwife Scholarship Award in the amount of $1,200.00.

Mercedes was one of 14 aspiring student midwives from across the United States who applied for the scholarship. The applicants reflected Certified Professional Midwife and Certified Nurse Midwife educational tracts. Respecting the busy lifestyles of student midwives who often juggle balancing family, school, clinicals and work, we designed a stress free application process.

The application process required a one-paragraph description of their scholarship need and their photograph. All the paragraphs were compelling, with the common thread of personal sacrifice and financial hardship to meet their goal of becoming a midwife. Each personal story was not more important than the other and reaffirmed the need for financial assistance for Black student midwives. Because of this, we chose the lottery system.

On June 30, 2019 Mercedes Synder won the lottery, making her the first recipient of 2019, Ayanna Ade Black Student Midwife Scholarship Fund. We are so happy for Mercedes and we look forward to following her success.

Hear from Mercedes Synder

I am completing my last year at Midwives College of Utah. This scholarship will help me cover the cost of required text books, reading materials, equipment, supplies and travel expenses. As the sole provider of my five children and retired mother, this scholarship is a reprieve from the financial responsibility to become a certified professional midwife. I am so honored to have received this award.
Thank you all.  ~ Mercedes 

Thank You to Our Donors

Contributions from Across the Nation

Names are not listed in any particular order

Kirby Wycoff

Courtney Firth

Emily Stevenson

Michelle Gold

Cecilia Buzzy

Katherine Byron

Virginia Bobro

Nadia English

Rahsheedah Mujtabba

Amanda Edwards

Makeda Kamara

Sista Midwife Production, LLC

Quaneisha Jenkins

Zalayshia Jackson

Tami Lilac

Marsha Jones

Kathleen Kirkhoff

Radiant Alchemy

LaVonne Moore

Brigitte Arle

Jennie Joseph

Heather Struckman

Conscious Surrender Birthing

Barbara Himes

Shafia Monroe 

Benjamin A. Goodrum

Doula Ready, LLC

Naomi Bradfute

About the Scholarship Fund

On May 5, 2019 Shafia Monroe Consulting/Birthing Change launched the Ayanna Ade Black Student Midwife Scholarship Fund.

Ayanna Ade was a traditional midwife, a Certified Nurse Midwife, and a national leader. She was a midwife mentor to all, co-founder of Childbirth Providers of African Descent (CPAD), and an advisory member for the International Center for Traditional Childbearing and its TX state representative for many years.

She did home births for women who lacked the resources to pay. And she was a light for the women who chose hospital birth. She worked to increase the number Black midwives, diversify the midwifery workforce, reduce infant mortality, improve maternal outcomes, support fathers and build community health.


From the President

Amy Blare

This is a dream come true for me to honor Ayana Ade's life with a scholarship fund. She was my midwife, mentor, and close friend. This scholarship fund reflects her values of equity in birth and diversity in midwifery. Thank you for your support in this work. 

Shafia Monroe -President

Shafia Monroe Consulting Helps health care professionals achieve cultural competency, increase clients, and improve birth outcomes.

(503) 281-1688

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Shafia Monroe Consulting · 3519 NE 15th Ave #193 · Portland, Oregon 97217 · USA