Apr 5, 2024 Jersey City Medical Center and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated to celebrate Black Maternal Health Week with a Community Baby Shower and Resource Fair

In support of new and expecting mothers, donations of new, gently used baby items may be donated.

Woman with baby

Jersey City, NJ – Black Maternal Health Week is April 11-17, 2024, and in support of Hudson County's Black Mothers, Jersey City Medical Center and the Rho Kappa Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated is hosting a Community Baby Shower and Resource Fair at its primary hospital location at 355 Grand Street in Jersey City. The event will be held on Monday, April 17, from 2 PM to 5 PM.

According to data from the NJ Office of Vital Statistics, in New Jersey from 2015-2019, the statewide infant mortality rate was 4.3 deaths per 1,000 births; Hudson County had a lower infant mortality rate of 2.9 deaths per 1,000 births. The infant mortality rate among Black infants (9.3 per 1,000 births) was double the statewide rate (4.3 per 1,000 births). Similarly, the infant mortality rate among Black infants (7.1 per 1,000 births) in Hudson County was 2.5 times the county rate (2.9 per 1,000 births) over the same period.

“The data clearly demonstrates critical importance of addressing maternal health disparities and promoting equitable care for all mothers,” said Leah Dungee, RN, Director of Maternal Child Health Services at Jersey City Medical Center, a facility of RWJBarnabas Health. “By connecting Black mothers with resources and people to support them through healthy pregnancies is a win for the Medical Center, Hudson County and for me, personally Dungee said.

Event Flyer

"The Community Baby Shower and Resource Fair is part of the Medical Center's commitment to empowering and supporting Black mothers during their maternal journey and providing essential resources and meaningful connections needed to help families thrive," said Adrienne Austin, Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Jersey City Medical Center, a facility of RWJBarnabas Health.

"Sisterhood and community service is the cornerstone of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated," said Jasmine Butler, Vice President of Rho Kappa Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. "Since two of our five program goals are to empower families and uplift our local communities, participating in the Black Maternal Health Week Community Baby Shower and Resource Fair is one of the many ways that we are working to ensure that Black mothers who are expecting a little one feels loved and supported in every way possible."

Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, a historically Black Greek-letter organization, has taken a proactive approach to tackling the pressing issue of Black maternal health. Members of Alpha Kappa Alpha have formed the Black Maternal Health Caucus to promote awareness, fight for evidence-based legislation, and prioritize the well-being of Black mothers and newborns.

At the event, opportunities will be available to:

  • Connect with certified doulas and learn from experts at the Partnership for Maternal and Child Health of Northern NJ, local Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), and other local agencies offering resources to support healthy pregnancies.
  • Meet providers and health professionals from Jersey City Medical Center's Women's Health and Wellness Services.
  • Tour and explore the state-of-the-art mother-baby unit at the Medical Center.

As part of its commitment to supporting families in Hudson County, new or gently used baby items, including clothes, car seats, strollers, etc., will be available for new and expecting mothers in need. Community members, businesses, organizations, and individuals are encouraged to donate new or gently used baby items to benefit mothers and families in need directly. Donations of infant clothing, car seats, strollers, and other essentials are highly recommended.

For a detailed list of desired items to donate or additional information, contact Adrienne Austin, Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, at (201) 395-7538 or Adrienne.Austin@rwjbh.org.

About Jersey City Medical Center

Jersey City Medical Center, an RWJBarnabas Health facility, is Healing, Enhancing, and Investing in Hudson County. It is a comprehensive, full-service acute and sub-acute care 348-bed teaching hospital. A not-for-profit hospital, the Medical Center is a state-designated Level II Regional Trauma Center with nearly 16,000 admissions and over 80,000 Emergency Department visits annually. The hospital's specialty services include women's health, orthopedics, heart and vascular care, and behavioral health. JCMC is the only full-service heart hospital in Hudson County, offering access to outstanding cardiologists and sophisticated and advanced treatments, such as cardiac surgery and Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacements (TAVR). RWJBarnabas Health and Jersey City Medical Center are in partnership with Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, the state's only NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center. JCMC is also a state-designated stroke center, a regional comprehensive cardiac center, a perinatal intensive care center, a regional level 3 neonatal intensive care unit for critically ill newborns, and home to the most advanced robotic-assisted surgical program in Hudson County. JCMC, a provider of Advanced Life Support for Hudson County, runs 911 Medical Call Screening for Hudson County and operates one of the state's busiest EMS systems.

Contact: Stacie Newton
Mobile: (201) 424-9678
E-mail: Stacie.Newton@rwjbh.org