Marqui, a dedicated mother and birth worker, is a founding member and promotional strategist for the Birth Brown Cooperative. She earned her Bachelors degree for Community Arts from the University of Maryland and has since flourished in this role. She is a full-spectrum Doula who uses her skill for community outreach to guide, both, mothers and training doulas in the art, beauty and necessity behind birth work. When she isn't working on activism for women and mothers, she is on the ground floor as the founder of the Philly Birth Project.
You can contact Marqui at firstname.lastname@example.org
Iresha Picot, M.Ed, LBS
You can contact Iresha at Iresha.Picot@gmail.com
Iresha Picot is a Doula, Licensed Behavior Specialist/Therapist and Community Activist. A Philly transplant by way of Virginia, Iresha trained as a Full-Spectrum Doula in 2011 with The Doula Project and with Birth Arts International as a Birth Doula in 2012. In 2014, Iresha trained as a Breast Feeding Counselor with the Philadelphia Department of Public Health and as a Midwife Assistant with Mamatoto Village. Iresha is the co-editor of the book, "The Color of Hope: People of Color Mental Health Narratives", and has written articles in the Research in the Teaching of English, Elephant Journal, Aunt Chloe's Journal, Specter Magazine and For Harriet. As a Birth Doula, Iresha has been able to support over 30 women during their birthing experience and supporting several women as a ‘hand holder” through Planned Parenthood.
Iresha’s current work is to combine her mental/behavior health training with her birthing skills, in supporting new mothers during their postpartum care with counseling, life coaching and overall emotional support.
Tekara Gainey is a reproductive justice advocate and birth worker. She fuses her background in anthropology and reproductive work to acknowledge and address the systems of oppression that impact availability and access to compassionate, non-judgmental, reproductive care to birthing persons and their families across the spectrum of their reproductive needs.
Tekara began her doula journey supporting abortions and pregnancy loss. She was later called to support the other end of pregnancy outcomes, birth, while volunteering for a hospital-based doula program. In this role, that Tekara noticed the undeniable magic of birth, strength of birthing people, and the need for an approach to birth that valued women’s voices, bodies, and choices.
Aba Oyedi studied birth work to avoid being shuffled through an impersonal medical system and to arrange the type of birth she desired: natural, without intervention or augmentation. This led to her personal home-birthing experience, which begat what soon became a passion for midwifery.
Aba trained with the International Center for Traditional Childbearing (ICTC) to become a Full Circle doula. Shortly thereafter, she was selected by Birthing Project USA to work as a midwives’ assistant on two international medical delegations to coastal Honduras. Working alongside midwives, representing various parts of the United States, she had the opportunity to help facilitate trainings that provided Garifuna midwives with supplies and skills not accessible in the region. This exposure led to a remarkable progression of events which included receiving a degree in nursing and passing the Pennsylvania State Board Nursing Examination in 2009. Since that time she’s had the privilege of assisting Christy Santoro with some of the amazing births of Motherland Midwifery and sharing the sacred first moments of life with many beautiful families.
She began a transformative journey toward CPM licensure at Birthwise Midwifery School, graduating June 2015 and earning her CPM certification by the end of 2015. It is because of her intimate introduction to the miraculous energy of pregnancy and birth that she supports home birth options. These experiences provide her with a depth of birthing perspectives she repeatedly draws from.