As a pediatric researcher and assistant professor with the University of Minnesota, Rebecca Shlafer has studied children, and more specifically, the children of incarcerated women, for years. She's seen just how difficult life was for pregnant inmates, who are often alone in their pregnancy, feeling isolated and confused.
But in 2012, Shlafer saw how things could change. That's when she and UMN started working with the nonprofit Everyday Miracles on the Isis Rising project, a program to support pregnant inmates at the all-female correctional facility in Shakopee. The program, which started in 2010, supplies the pregnant women with doulas - professionals who are like coaches for for pregnant women, giving them emotional guidance and support through the entire pregnancy process.More »