• About Us

    Strengthening Families, Empowering Communities

The Okionu Birth Foundation provides two of the biggest Aftercare supports through its programming by partnering with personal chefs experienced in home food delivery and mental health collaboration. By collaborating with organizations that focus on preventing mental illness, as well as those that help postpartum families of color overcome social barriers, we can create a strong network of support for communities dealing with these issues.

We empower families by connecting them with therapists who can help them through the specific challenges they face during their postpartum period.

We make sure they have food delivered to their homes after giving birth so they can take time to recover and connect with their babies. By providing these services, we are not only helping individuals, but also contributing to a movement of postpartum families who have access to the care they need during one of the most difficult times in their lives.

Black women have alarming maternal death rates, and a significant portion of those deaths take place within the first six weeks postpartum. By connecting families to therapists who can relate to them culturally, we remove a significant barrier to mental health support and vulnerability. Making sure that they have home-delivered meals after birth allows them a moment to rest, heal and connect. When young girls can witness the mothers in their community being taken care of, it changes the expectation they have for what their postpartum season could and should look like. Our services not only strengthen and support families in the moment, but they also have the potential to change the entire trajectory of postpartum care in that families’ lineages.

Okionu
Jacquelyn Clemmons

Meet The Founder

Certified Traditional Postpartum Doula | Author 

Hello, I am Jacquelyn Clemmons daughter of Wanda Simmons-Clemmons, granddaughter of Flora Simmons, great-granddaughter of Beatrice McLaughlin, great-great-granddaughter of Naomi Leslie, and mother of 3.

I am a birth and traditional postpartum doula, certified breastfeeding specialist, and author. I have spent the past 20 years helping families from various backgrounds and ethnicities to have the care they need as they experience the joys of birth and the challenges of nursing. Through proper care, deep nourishment, and community support, I aim to help BIPOC families experience their births and postpartum seasons in a positive way. 

Family History

In the late 1800s my great-great-grandmother Naomi Leslie was a Grand Midwife in Carthage, NC. She not only delivered all of her grandchildren but was a sought-after midwife in her town and surrounding counties.
Her daughter Beatrice McLaughlin was a soft-spoken homemaker and mother to 11 children. After her husband fell ill she began working as a nursing home nurse's assistant in Carthage, NC.
My grandmother Flora Simmons affectionately known as "Flo" was a determined and vivacious woman who paved her own path while making sure to always care for others. By day she was a special education teacher at P.S. 20 in Bedstuy Brooklyn, NY. After school, she cared for children of local wealthy white families. In the late '60s and early '70s during the height of the civil rights movement in America, she made sure she provided love and comfort to her community by selling loaded $5 plates to whoever showed up to 216 Adelphi St.
Her oldest daughter, my mother, Wanda Simmons-Clemmons went on to become a physician. Her entire medical career has been centered on the "least of them". From the forgotten elderly population to low-income people who can be all but forgotten in the medical system.

What does this have to do with Okionu Birth Foundation?

All of these women in my matrilineal lineage, including myself, have been in service to their communities through birth work, education, healthcare, and meal preparation. Okionu Birth Foundation is the contribution of the new generation to meet the needs of postpartum families and our communities at large.

Appearances

*  Jacquelyn’s work has been featured on:

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Okionu Birth Foundation recently was awarded a Goldman Sachs` Black Women Impact grant.

download a free post partum recipe