Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. Fights Against Birth Inequity, Raising Over $700,000 for March of Dimes
WASHINGTON, Sept. 13, 2019 — Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., an international women’s service organization and 47-year partner with the March of Dimes, was recognized by March of Dimes president, Stacey Stewart, for winning the “March of Dimes Gwen Carmen Alpha Phi Alpha/Zeta Phi Beta Challenge Award” on Sept. 10 at a reception held at the sorority’s headquarters in Washington D.C. Zeta chapters across the country raised over $700,000 for March for Babies walking events in 2019, contributing over $5.5 million to date. Monies raised provide prenatal education and support for mothers in need.
Zeta and the March of Dimes serve tens of thousands of women with prenatal education and support through its Stork’s Nest and Prematurity Awareness programs to help alleviate birth inequity. “Our mothers are dying during and after childbirth at alarming rates. As a service organization of over 120,000 women, Zeta Phi Beta will continue to lead and champion for mothers and babies worldwide,” said Valerie Hollingsworth Baker, International Centennial President.
According to the March of Dimes, the mortality rate in the U.S. is 17.3 deaths per 100,000 live births. However, for non-Hispanic black women it is 43.5 per 100,000 live births versus 12.7 for white women. “Our chapters are committed to implementing strong innovative programming to achieve better pregnancy outcomes and decrease barriers to birth equity,” said Dr. Joanne Patterson, Zeta’s director of Stork’s Nest and Birth Equity program. “We are excited to launch a Stork’s Nest mobile app and offer transportation options in 2020, our centennial year, to better serve expectant mothers on bedrest and in rural areas,” Patterson added.
This week Zeta also participated in the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s Annual Legislative Conference, hosting a Stork’s Nest “Mother’s Day” exhibit at the Expo. Additionally, International President Hollingsworth Baker was a panelist at Mayor Muriel Bowser’s National Maternal and Infant Health Summit.
Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated, was founded in 1920 on the campus of Howard University is headquartered in Washington, D.C. Zeta has initiated a diverse membership of more than 120,000 college-educated women with over 850 chapters in North America, Europe, Asia, the Caribbean, Africa and the Middle East.