“We promise to humbly live and participate in the culture among the people we serve.”
~ MorningStar Community Guiding Principle
One of MorningStar Community’s guiding principles regards the preservation of simple and sacred birth – especially among the poor, and the protection of the midwives who serve them – especially in our Global Villages.
For over 20 years our community has had the great and good pleasure to choose C.A.S.A. as the recipient of our service and mission work. C.A.S.A.'s mission to improve and empower the lives of at-risk youth, especially women, in San Miguel de Allende and its many surrounding villages, began some twenty years ago and now reaches nearly 50,000 Mexican people a year. Under the visionary leadership of Nadine Goodman, C.A.S.A. has grown to include a full service Maternity Hospital constructed to provide superior care to the most needy, and the first government recognized professional midwifery school in Mexico.
C.A.S.A. learned early on that educational programs for at risk youth was not enough. Responding to requests by motivated and caring youth leaders who grew from the first C.A.S.A. training programs, C.A.S.A. also includes a child development center, a playground and library which are open to the public, ecology programs for forest restoration, a youth theatre, and the strong foundational peer counselor program.
Human suffering can seldom be felt so acutely or intimately by multiple people as in the developing and birthing of a child in the midst of poverty and malnutrition. Immense demands on the physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, and psycho-social life of a women, her womb-baby, and their family circle has its peak during pregnancy and childbirth.
Pregnancy and childbirth are designed to be expressions of highest potential and ever-lasting joy. They are also the hope of a Global Village's future. Sadly, the reality of pregnancy and childbirth for most women in developing countries is something lacking in the divine. Prevalent illiteracy along with dirt floors, inadequate food, and no transportation, phones, or electricity make up life for most rural village families. Women often die needlessly from the lack of basic necessities which most of us take for granted daily.
It is no easy task to face the daily challenge of malnourished, poverty-driven, overworked, and heart-worn women who come to C.A.S.A for help. Most women have less than primary school education, no modern living conditions, more than 6 siblings, many of whom share the same dwelling, and a diet of tortillas, beans and cactus. Their mothers birthed in home villages with local traditional midwives. Those same midwives are now old and dying. There are few daughters who wish to take their place. The young are lost and flee to the city hospitals where they are, for the first time, separated from their families, labor alone, and often receive a surgical delivery. Surgical deliveries cost them in money, reproductive health, maternal-infant bonding, cultural respect, and personal power – a high price they cannot afford to pay.
At C.A.S.A. they are received by professional midwives within an interdisciplinary team, committed to natural and sensitive labor, childbirth, and breastfeeding. Simultaneously, C.A.S.A. bravely develops political strategies to educate and convince international agencies, government officials, and policy makers that the science and art of midwifery is critical for the reduction of maternal and infant mortality and morbidity in rural areas, especially in developing nations. C.A.S.A.'s mission to preserve midwifery as a profession within the emerging modern healthcare structures further illustrates her courage and vision.
Birth is the beginning. C.A.S.A.'s new midwifery students receive training from both a highly educated and skilled interdisciplinary medical team and from field clinical apprenticeships with traditional midwives in rural villages. As graduates, they return to their native local communities and offer care that reflects professional expertise and cultural sensitivity.
We love arriving any time of the year, any time of the day, and finding the unique C.A.S.A. energy and enthusiasm filling the staff and international volunteers as they mobilize themselves out into community to serve the needs of others. With confidence and experience they give hope and comfort to others, just as they once received. The C.A.S.A. prototype has been so attractive, successful, and duplicable that international exchange programs are networked in both developed and developing countries.
It pleases us to know that in our Great Big World there is a little body of loving, caring people who do their very best every day to help bring a precious child safely, simply, and sacredly into the same world in which we all live and dream and believe. C.A.S.A. makes the difference. By offering love that meets body, heart, and soul needs, mothers learn new ways to meet the needs of their babies. Through C.A.S.A., each women/each student returns to her home/her community with the knowledge, skills, and conviction that by helping one another we make the world a healthier, friendlier place. This is the C.A.S.A. way of making a future brighter than today.
MorningStar Community cherishes and respects the art, wisdom, and irreplaceable treasure of the Traditional Midwife to her community. It is for these reasons that we have whole-heartedly embraced the vision and great work of C.A.S.A. and continue to choose C.A.S.A. as the recipient of our mission Holywork.
We welcome your monetary gifts to support the Holywork of MorningStar Community and/or our mission work with C.A.S.A. Please mail donations to MorningStar Community, 22 Blue Jay Road, Kaiser, MO, 65047-2106 or contact us for additional information.
22 Blue Jay Road
Kaiser, MO 65047-2106
Website managed by: Kalista Schwartz