Documentary screening, expert panel to focus on Black maternal health

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Three Lawrence organizations are coming together to bring the community a screening of “Aftershock,” an award-winning documentary, followed by a panel discussion on issues of Black maternal health.

“’Aftershock’ engages a community-centered approach, focusing on the ripple effects Black maternal mortality inflicts on entire communities,” according to an event page. “A growing body of research supports the reality that Black women’s health is community health.”


BLACK (Black Literature & Arts Collective of Kansas) Lawrence, the Lawrence, KS Juneteenth organization and the Lawrence, Kansas Branch NAACP are hosting the event.

The event is set to begin at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 16, with the screening starting at 2:30, followed by the panel at 4 p.m. at the Lawrence Public Library, 707 Vermont St.

“This documentary is a must-see, detailing the journeys of families and communities united by health statistics that MUST change,” according to the event page. “A panel of birth experts & workers will be ready to engage in discussion with Alex Kimball Williams, a local researcher whose recent local work with Black maternal and child health is commendable.”

Two of the panelists include Dr. Michele Bennett, of LMH Health, and Christopher Cooper, a doula trained at Uzazi Village in Kansas City, Missouri.

The hosts have a moderate budget for panelists and other needs, but anyone who wishes to make a donation may do so via PayPal.

“We can’t wait to facilitate the conversation and continue spreading awareness in our community about matters of Black health!” the event page says. “We love the use of film as a creative medium to educate around this issue.”

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