Monday, September 16, 2013

Refugee Babies

You decide to move to Canada, because in your country, you are hearing stories from neighbouring countries about chemical attacks, schools closing, medical care non-existent. Your friend's cousin's aunt married a man from a country where, ten years after she moved there, she is leaving everything and running to live as a refugee in a country she only visited once before, on holiday.

Your sister can legally sponsor you, and you move to Canada. You and your husband can find work legally, and the children can stay with your sister. You live together in a small apartment, smaller than the one at home but... the future looks good

Even the birth control pill doesn't work 100% of the time. The best way to not get pregnant is to not have heterosexual sex. But, you're in love, you're on an adventure...the sperm meets the egg, and you are pregnant.

You know you don't have medical coverage, but you don't care. You're young and healthy.

Then you find a doctor, who tells you that the birth will cost you at least $5000. If you have a cesarian section, or your baby needs care, it could go up to $10,000 or even $15,000.


I know some people think that the lady in question should "go home". But sometimes that just isn't possible. MBC has assisted women who have been living in Montreal as domestics, for years, and when they find themselves pregnant, they find themselves out of work and out of a home, and without medical care. Other women do not qualify as refugees, but they know if they go home they will be killed, or raped, or they will have to work as prostitutes. It's always easy for you to say, if you're a hard-working person with the good luck to be born into a place where hard work pays, and food is on the table, that "these people" need to act differently. But everyone makes love, and babies are conceived all the time. And sometimes a baby is conceived out of love - and when a woman keeps a baby in her body who is the result of violence and violation, doesn't that woman at least deserve our care?

Babies are being born every minute, and I believe we are ALL responsible for them. If we can assist a mother to have a birth experience that is full of love, and she can leave the birthing room knowing that she is capable of providing unconditional love for her baby, and knowing that she will be supported in this task, then we are paving the way for a better world for all of us: our children, and everyone's children.

Montreal Birth Companions doulas accompany women like these to the hospital to labor and give birth. Many of our clients are single, or apart from their families. Some have other children "back at home". Some have love babies, others have babies conceived during violence. Some have medical coverage, many do not.

If you would like more information about our program, please visit Montreal Birth Companions.












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