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THE COHI BLOG

our work  •  her stories

I wasn’t sure if I’d be lucky enough during my time on Lesvos, but I was able to witness a birth! I didn't know if I’d get the chance while I was here, because although many pregnant women come through Lesvos, they are only here for a few hours or at most a day. 


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Hi - Live from Greece! I have been struggling with where to start… I am quite convinced I am not going to say anything to change anyone’s mind about the politics of this crisis, nor do I have any solutions to offer.
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My first two weeks in country involved traveling to an adjacent province called Las Minas, west of Waspam, with a delegation from Wangki Tangni, COHI’s community-based host organization.
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I am not a fan of first impressions.  I find they have more to do with me than with the other person or situation!  After a week at Bumi Wadah, I have ideas rolling around. After living in Korea and spending months in Sierra Leone, I see many contrasts and many similarities.  


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I’ve been working in global reproductive health for almost 20 years — gulp — and I thought I had a pretty good sense of the parts that are hard for me, where my emotional boundaries lie.
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Immediately arriving to the airport in Port-au-Prince, Haiti I had a feeling that stuck with me during my five weeks abroad: I was completely overwhelmed. To attempt to truly describe this feeling is like having all of your senses working at full capacity at the same time.


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I’m the kind of person who envisions their goals and what they would like to accomplish, and then takes the most presumed, direct path to get to where I’d like to go. I am motivated and inspired by my passions, though I am entirely risk averse and tend to choose the most obvious and traditional – safe - route in following what moves me.
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I was alone in labor, as we are in life. There is no one else who can do this living, birthing, for us. Yet I had as a constant companion my husband’s hands.


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Cesarean Section deliveries are a gift, a blessing, and save many, many lives. I was one of those mamas, twice. I have many friends and allies whose tales are similar to mine.
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Labor is experienced by each woman differently. No one labor is superior, and no two are equal. April is Cesarean Section Awareness month, and as a repeat c-section mama, COHI feels called to craft an ode to those of us who bear the scars of our labors physically on the outside of our bodies.
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Labor, there is a reason is it called this. It is the hardest physical work we, women, will most likely encounter in our lives, and the most gratifying. These words have been written, sung, said thousands of times, but cannot be truly understood until the fires of this process have been felt by each of us making the transformation complete.
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Refugee Clinic hosted by Catholic Charities and the Hope Family Health Center McAllen, Texas

Juana and her family were fleeing Honduras to get to the United States without documentation. When I met Juana (not her real name), she was visibly rattled, and going through the motions of caring for her young daughter.
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