Community participation

Last fall I took a course on community change in public health. One of the major take-home lessons of the course was this: involving and empowering the people you’re trying to serve can dramatically improve the outcomes of a public health intervention. The course focused on curbing diseases like malaria and AIDS, while my goals here of bringing Pagans guidance and inspiration through childbearing feel much more modest, but the basic approach of listening and empowering seems just as relevant.

From the beginning, Pagan Families has been a multi-author blog, and I intend to continue soliciting and welcoming contributions from many voices. On the Pagan Families Facebook page readers have been stepping up and using the space to help each other. Recently, for example, somebody posted looking for a midwife in their region and quickly another reader jumped in with a recommendation.

I wanted to make it easier for me to listen to you and your questions, so when we moved Pagan Families to Patheos I asked the tech folks here to build us the new Ask Us tab. You can use that page to submit your questions about any aspect of Paganism and childbearing. I’ll do my best to answer your question or to find someone who can. Both your question and the answer may appear here on the blog so others can benefit from you asking.

As we all get oriented at Patheos I’d also like to open a thread here in the comments about how Pagan Families can be even better at involving and empowering you. What do you want to know that Pagan Families might be able to provide? What Pagan resources do you wish you had during your pregnancy?

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About Sarah Whedon

Sarah Whedon is founding editor of Pagan Families, the author of Birth on the Labyrinth Path: Sacred Embodiment in the Childbearing Year, and former Chair of the Department of Theology and Religious History at Cherry Hill Seminary. Sarah’s teaching, research, and advocacy work center around topics of spirituality, feminism, and reproduction. She makes her home in the Boston area with her partner and their children.


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