These sessions will be available to everyone at the conference, but attendees must purchase the CE add-on to their registration to receive credit.
Courtney Baca, Sarah Dudley
Title of Educational Activity: Bright Futures: Babywearing Accessibility in Public High Schools
The Bright Futures program was founded in 2016. The purpose of the program is to enrich parenting resource education in public schools for young parents and families finishing their educations. The program provides carriers, fittings, and ongoing support to families in the schools.
This session will cover their program’s culture and philosophies on the program and outreach work. Choosing community over charity and what that means when thinking about the populations you’re working within. They will cover the early phases of the program, the work within the pilot school (New Futures High School in Albuquerque, NM), and why it is important to always remain flexible and in touch with the basics of both babywearing and parenting.
Title of Educational Activity: “How to create a babywearing business concept with social and cultural impact with a unique community of women challenged by a common goal”.
In this session, participants will learn how to create a program like “AYU Loves Kids”, a cross-functional platform intended to support and promote:
Single and new mothers to become active in a stay at home business model while providing outreach to children nationwide.
Foundations that benefit from the sale of products
Entities that offer protection to underprivileged children via educational programs.
Free breastfeeding and parenting educational programs.
Products made with raw material excess from the production process.
Weaving to express the creativity and wisdom of the communities living in hard conditions like caught in the crossfire of Colombia’s war between guerrilla dissidents, paramilitaries, drug traffickers and the government. Weaving is part of their lives and a means to express their creativity and wisdom, to give an unprecedented opportunity to show their heritage and magic to the world).
Title of Educational Activity: Why understanding social justice concepts matters
Title of Educational Activity: Establishing Connections between BWI and Local Public Health Offices by Utilizing Evidence Based Research Surrounding Breastfeeding Support
This session will serve as a road map for those Babywearing groups interested in forming collaborations with local Community Health Organizations to provide carrier support to under-served communities. The discussion will follow this outline, with time allotted for questions at the end of the session:
– Making the initial connection with local Public Health Offices
– Outlining a plan with your group leadership for long-term goals
– Networking to bring BWI into the larger community health dialogue
– Presenting evidence-based breastfeeding research to establish credibility
– Meeting with staff at these offices to determine the scope of BWI involvement locally
-Utilizing the terminology of Community Health Organizations to demonstrate aligned goals for public health intervention
– Respectful approaches to working in under-served communities
Examples of various models for this kind of outreach will be presented through the course of this discussion.
Title of Educational Activity: Using Baby Carriers to Meet Infant Feeding Goals
This session will go over all the basics you need to utilize your baby carrier for infant feeding!
We will discuss:
– Biological benefits of baby carrying as it supports breastfeeding/chestfeeding
– Proper positioning to safely feed in a carrier
– Which carriers can be used for on-the-go feeding
– Practical Considerations for clothing while feeding in a carrier
Various feeding positions will be demonstrated in this session, with time at the end for questions.
Title of Educational Activity: The NICU Babywearing Study
OBJECTIVE. The benefits of skin-to-skin and kangaroo care have been well researched and documented. Despite the large volume of evidence to support various and long-term benefits to both caregivers and children, skin-to-skin care continues to be difficult to practice with eligible caregiver-child dyads. Babywearing may have similar benefits as skin-to-skin care but there is very little scholarly research on babywearing and no research available on babywearing children born prematurely. This study attempts to bring understanding regarding the experience of caregivers who babywear after a NICU hospitalization.
METHOD. Fifteen caregivers taking home infants discharged from a Level 4 NICU in a large metropolitan hospital were enrolled in this qualitative phenomenological study. Eight retained study participants were interviewed about sixty days after discharge.
RESULTS. Six themes were identified in this study. Four were similar to themes previously identified in kangaroo and skin-to-skin care research: Bonding, Calmness and Sleep, Decreased Stress and Anxiety, and Parental Empowerment. In addition to these previously described themes, two themes independent to this study were identified: Ease of Work, and Self-care.
CONCLUSION. There is a paucity of research on the practice of babywearing. This study highlighted the need for further qualitative and quantitative research to support the needs of families caring for children born prematurely. In addition, there is evidence that babywearing could ease the workload for caregivers managing households that include high-needs children, such as premature infants. Another potential research focus should be using babywearing as mitigation for the effects of stress, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress after a NICU discharge for preemie parents.
Title of Educational Activity: Therapeutic Babywearing: Advantages and techniques for typical and at-risk populations
Babywearing is defined as the act or practice of keeping an infant close to an adult’s torso by using a supporting device that straps to the front of the adult’s body. The practice of babywearing as an adjunct to therapy is likely to be beneficial to children and caregivers. Although research on babywearing is limited, the therapeutic benefits of “skin-to-skin care” or “kangaroo care” have been empirically established. Building on this research, this article attempts to raise awareness about babywearing by elucidating the likely therapeutic benefits for children with disabilities or special needs and areas for future research.
Title of Educational Activity: Using kangaroo care and baby carriers to support nasal gastric feeding and weight gain in the NICU
In this course we will cover how to use various kangaroo care devices and baby carriers to safely support weight gain and nasal gastric tube feeding in the NICU. We will discuss in depth working with care teams and families to implement these practices. We will cover how these practices can be used to help keep the window of breast milk production and eventual breastfeeding open longer through skin to skin contact and engaged infant parenting and feeding practices. This class is geared toward nurses, LC’s and Doulas. 45 minutes.
Title of Edu
cational Activity: Public Health Outreach for Baby Carrier Educators
We will discuss how to address babywearing with the public health audience and how this is different than working with other types of clients or on social media. We will also talk about how to deal with clients concerns about breastfeeding or wearing in regards to common worries addressed like “won’t my baby get spoiled or need ME too much?” We will talk about the “Baby Carriers Provided” study at WIC Michigan and what it could mean for the future of WIC and Baby Carrier Sales Nationally as well as touch on some other public health organizations and outreach groups and how they are using baby carriers to support infant feeding and bonding with success.
Title of Educational Activity: SIDS, Positional Asphyxia, and Suffocation: How to prevent the preventable, promote optimal safety, and empower parents to reduce the possibility of Infant Incident.
In this class Becca will explain the differences between SIDS, positional asphyxiation and suffocation. We will learn how to recognize the risk factors and dangers for each and the big parenting choices that we can talk to parents about that are instigators for each. We will also explore how to deal with common sleep recommendations, analyze them and fully explore the work of Dr. James Mckenna at the Mother-Baby Sleep Research Laboratory at Notre Dame. We will then cover how to teach parents empowering skills to know when a baby is breathing properly in any type of baby product, including but not exclusive to baby carriers, as well as how to know when a baby has a compromised airway and how to address it in an reassuring way. We will discuss skills and products you can teach about to help sooth parents fears on their journey, as well as how to talk about infant breathing and sleep concerns in a delicate but empowering way.
Title of Educational Activity: Can babywearing play a supportive role in developing a strong fatherhood?
Fathers’ attachment processes during pregnancy and in the early postpartum has received scant attention for many years. Here we describe current knowledge of fathers’ attachment to their infants. Fathers’ caregiving behavior is distinctly different to mothers’ and has been found to contribute uniquely to child development. Fathers may also compensate for depressed mothers’ impaired caregiving. There is a growing body of research, demonstrating how fathers’ brain and hormonal caregiving systems as well as their infant-directed attachment are influenced and shaped through being and interacting with their infant through e.g. father-infant contact. We will discuss the implications of these findings for your babywearing consultancy practice.
Title of Educational Activity: Priming parents for proximity: How we may support parents during pregnancy.
Approximately half of Western parents have an insecure attachment to their own caregivers. Approximately one in five parents will suffer from unresolved trauma. Insecure attachment and unresolved trauma on the part of parents influence their caregiving capacity and presumably also their tolerance of and willingness towards engaging in nourishing parent-infant contact. A growing body of literature points to the links between prenatal and postnatal attachment representations amongst mothers, and furthermore to links between prenatal attachment representations and subsequent attachment quality and socio-emotional development of their infants. At the same time, amongst some psychoanalysts, pregnancy is considered to represent a unique window of opportunity for reflection on and resolution of own negative attachment history. A simple evidence-based and well-piloted intervention “Pregnancy Dialogues” will be presented. Over 100 participants have successfully completed the intervention, and it is currently implemented in 10 sites in Denmark. The lecture participants will be divided into small groups to discuss potential approaches for resolving insecure attachment history during pregnancy within their field of work. Suggestions will be shared amongst all participants through brief verbal presentations from the small groups.
Title of Educational Activity: How parents’ own attachment patterns and trauma history may influence their willingness and ability to engage in extensive physical contact.
There is a growing medical understanding of the broad range of positive health effects of early parent-infant contact. Despite this evidence, getting parents to adopt a caregiving practice, which involves ample physical contact, can be more challenging than hitherto understood. Parents’ own attachment and unresolved trauma history is likely to play a great part. In this workshop, we will describe current medical understanding of attachment and trauma, along with its prevalence in the general Western population. We will describe current societal and medical efforts to include such knowledge in pediatric prevention medicine. Furthermore, we will discuss potential links between attachment and trauma history and parent’s inclination to engage in affectionate parent-infant contact. We hope to organize brief twinning exercises, where participants’ own attachment experiences (whether lived or observed in others during peer-to-peer support or consultancy) in relation to babywearing will be discussed and reflected upon.
Title of Educational Activity: THE SCIENCE OF SMELLING YOUR BABY and Other Amazing Pieces of the Mother-Baby Bond
Have you ever wondered why we love the smell of new babies? Did you know this act of smelling babies is extremely beneficial to both mother and baby? The act of smelling babies serves a very important function in the survival of our youngest members in our community and is just one of the many ways we are wired to bond with and protect our babies. This presentation takes a look at the fascinating components of the mother-baby bond in a unique and thought-provoking way.
We will take a look at the mother-baby bond as it begins pre-birth and how it continues throughout the first year. We will look at various studies that have been completed in recent years. We will also look at ways to increase this mother-baby bond in fun, practical ways. When we understand what is happening to our bodies and with our babies, we can appreciate the complexity of the mother-baby bond even more!
Title of Educational Activity: Visual Thinking Strategies as a Tool for Babywearing Educators
While abstract art and a baby carrier may not appear to have a lot in common, both can be a puzzling thing to understand. So, as a babywearing educator, Priscilla Parra has discovered that a strategy originally used to facilitate discussions related to art can also be useful in helping caregivers learn babywearing skills. The technique, called Visual Thinking Strategies, encourages critical thinking, communication skills, and builds confidence. Priscilla first learned about and utilized Visual Thinking Strategies (VTS) when she worked as an art museum educator. She now applies a form of VTS in her instruction as a Volunteer Babywearing Educator with Babywearing International of Portland and as an educator for Baby Tula. During this presentation, you will be introduced to the methodology of Visual Thinking Strategies, participate in a facilitated art discussion, and explore ways in which Visual Thinking Strategies can be adapted for babywearing educators to use when assisting caregivers. You will leave this presentation with a new teaching tool to better support student led instruction.
Dr. Charles Price, Erin Mannen, Kathryn Havens, V. Huayamave
Title of Educational Activity: Biomechanical Aspects of Babywearing Applied to Infants and Adults
This 90 minute session p
rovides an update regarding the effects of babywearing on infant hip and spine development. Current biomechanical research will be presented regarding the optimum position for the infant and for the wearer in order to minimize adverse effects. Several brief lectures will be followed by specific examples and discussion.
1. Effects of Babywearing on Hip and Spine Development – C. Price, MD
2. Determination of Optimum Hip Position During Babywearing – V. Huayamave, PhD
3. Infant Motion Studies and Muscle Activities During Babywearing – E. Mannen, PhD
4. Biomechanical Considerations for the Baby Wearer – K. Havens, PhD
5. Case Presentations, Discussion, Q&A
Catherine Starnes, Lela Williams
Title of Educational Activity: Babywearing as a Public Health Intervention
Babywearing has the potential to improve parent-infant health and wellness. Developing an evidence-base for the effectiveness of babywearing as a parenting tool is an important step towards establishing it as a public health intervention and bringing it into more accessible settings (e.g., pediatricians’ offices, child welfare services, non-profit programs and agencies). Two speakers will share their results from two different studies to provide evidence that babywearing is associated with increased breastfeeding rates, better quality sleep, fewer physical health symptoms, and overall enhanced physical and mental well-being for both infants and their caregivers.
Lela Rankin Williams, Associate Professor in the School of Social Work at Arizona State University, will present data from the Mother Baby Bonding Study, a babywearing intervention study with teen mothers. She has found an empirical link between babywearing and breastfeeding: length of babywearing and hours spent babywearing were both associated with breastfeeding their infant for longer. In addition to the quantitative findings, she will share mother’s qualitative experiences with breastfeeding and babywearing which were transcribed and coded using thematic content analysis following one-on-one interviews at 3 time points in their infants’ development.
Catherine Starnes, Assistant Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at Belmont University, will use data from an exploratory survey of babywearing and non-babywearing caregivers. She will present evidence about the correlational relationship of babywearing to the physical and mental health of caregivers.
Those who attend the session will be provided with a research base for babywearing as an effective public health intervention that they can bring back to share in their communities (e.g., lending libraries, babywearing educational events, and related agencies).
Cole Williams – pending
Title of Educational Activity: Keynote for the 2018 International Babywearing Conference
Lela Rankin Williams
Title of Educational Activity: A Comparison of Experiences with Babywearing in an Intervention Study
The goal of this session is to examine differences in experiences with babywearing; mothers using carriers on their own compared to mothers using carriers as part of an intervention study in which they received babywearing instruction and ongoing support. Findings have implications for the importance of babywearing educators and how carriers are marketed to the general population.
The Mother Baby Bonding Study is a community-based intervention study that was designed to quantitatively and qualitatively assess the benefits of babywearing with young mothers (15-22 years old). Mothers were recruited from two community agencies and were randomly assigned to receive a baby carrier with babywearing instruction from a VBE (intervention condition) or to receive a baby book set (control condition). Mother’s in the intervention condition were told to wear their baby at least one hour every day. Mother’s in the control condition were told to read to their babies. Mothers were assessed in their homes when their babies were 2-4 weeks of age and were followed up 3- and 6-months later (3 time points).
At each wave, all mothers who reported using a baby carrier more than once (n=56; 40% of control mothers babywore at W3) were asked open-ended questions about their experiences (e.g., “What has your overall experience with babywearing been like?”). Interviews were transcribed and analyzed using grounded theory. An independent researcher, blinded to condition, extracted the dominant message from each interview and coded it into themes and subthemes on the basis of frequency, specificity, emotion, and extensiveness.
Four themes emerged in order of saliency: Bonding, soothing, convenience, and infant well-being. Convenience emerged as the primary theme pre-intervention (W1). Post-intervention, those that babywore in the control group continued emphasizing the carrier’s convenience whereas the intervention group primarily stressed its bonding benefits.
Control mothers typically babywore to complete tasks/activities in lieu of a stroller. Intervention mothers were asked to use the carrier daily, and consequentially, were more likely to babywear at home (to calm/soothe, hold their baby longer). Differences may be partially due to the marketing of infant carriers as transportation aids rather than parenting tools. Preliminary results hold promising policy implications for the promotion of infant carriers alongside babywearing education in order to capitalize on the bonding/attachment benefits of Babywearing.
Title of Educational Activity: Babywearing and Breastmilk: How breastmilk composition and production predicts normal human behaviors.
In this session attendees will learn about how the composition of milk varies widely among mammals. They will learn some of the factors that affect the different mammalian milks and how studying milk can sometimes predict environment and behavior. From that information we will examine what the composition of human milk can teach us about normal human feeding behaviors and parenting practices. Finally we will see that the practice of babywearing is consistent behavior based on human milk composition and infant development. We will examine how babywearing supports the normal biological behaviors of frequent feeding and care for human infants.
BWI Volunteers will be doing VBE assessments on-site. Details to follow.
Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders (PMADs) and implications for pregnancy and postpartum professionals
• Incidence of PMADs • Why it is relevant to pregnancy and parenting professionals • What gets categorized as a PMAD • Baby Blues vs PMAD • What is a PMAD • PostPartum Psychosis •Risk Factors to be aware of •Current Assessments used •Potential treatment options available •Indications for Pregnancy and Parenting professionals •Resources for care in your community
Babywearing for Hiking
A overview basic hiking safety while wearing a child in a carrier at any age. The pros and cons of 5 carrier types will be highlighted—-hard frame, SSC, wraps, ring slings, and meh deis.
See how body types, trail types, and child development can play a major factor in carrier selection.
Marisa Roberts-Hauptman and Kassondra Coxson
Finding Friendship Through Fandom
A roundtable discussion of approaches for meeting people with shared interests and making friends in both real world and online settings. Strategies shared will be applicable to babywearing, geekdom, or any interest.
Understanding the Hybrid Baby Carrier
Western Babywearing typically breaks carriers into 4 distinct functional categories: slings, wraps, soft-structured carriers, and meh dais. Yet there are many carriers which fall between these categories, and the market for these “hybrid” carriers is ever-expanding. In this session, Kristi Hayes-Devlin and Joanna McNeilly will explore many of the variations in the “hybrid” category. • How are hybrid carriers positioned in the current marketplace? • When is a hybrid carrier the right choice for a family? • How can educators best help families in fitting and using hybrid carriers? • How can the “hybrid” approach to carrier design either simplify or complicate the act of carrying? • How can you evaluate a hybrid as a retailer, educator, or babywearing parent?
DIY Compliance for Manufacturers, Retailers, and Consultants: Creating a written plan and record-keeping system
The world of baby carrier compliance can be overwhelming for small businesses! In this hands-on workshop, we’ll separate fact from fiction and learn the basics of creating a written compliance plan and record-keeping system. Though the greatest burden for compliance documentation lies with manufacturers, retailers and educators should also protect themselves and their clients through the use of a compliance plan rooted in best practice.
OMG! Babywearing Can Optimize My Time!
The ultimate “Get It Done” Guide.
OMG = Stay Organized. Meet Goals.
How babywearing can help you optimize your time.
Krystal will be reviewing the basics of handwoven wraps and the steps for creating a handwoven piece. Fibers will be available to discuss and compare.
Babywearing for Plus Size Caregivers
In this session, Kathy will share knowledge and information on:
1. companies that are celebrating a diversity of sizes and making improvements in making carriers more accessible to all caregivers,
2. tips and techniques for positioning around larger breasts or bellies,
3. tips and techniques to overcome any reduced flexibility especially when getting a child on your back, and
4. the difference between fit and comfort, and finding your style.
Babywearing and DMT (Dance-Movement Therapy) for everyday bonding
During this 90 min session you will learn:
*What is DMT and its benefits
*How it can be applied as a babywearing parent or caregiver
*How it can be applied as a babywearing educator
*Special applications for personal use
When in a new life situation, have you found yourself in need of feeling cradled or moving around to release stress?
Movement is part of a babie’s everyday life, since the womb and on to birth and their development throughout the following years. It is one of the first ways of creating a bond between the baby and the mother’s body to nurture. A bond between the baby and the outerworld to explore and a bond between the baby and the life challenges that need to be embraced.
With DMT (Dance-Movement Therapy) applied in everyday babywearing, educators, caregivers and parents can find tools for their families to heal from non-constructive experiences (physical and/or emotional) and prepare babies to embrace life challenges, it also provides new ways to create family bonds; it’s a beautiful movement therapy that moves humans towards peaceful and respectful personal progress.
Raw Milk Stories
Breastfeeding is instinctual, natural, normal, and necessary. That doesn’t mean it’s automatically easy or filled with bliss. This session will create a circle where attendees will deeply listen and allow the power of sharing stories to heal, celebrate, grieve, release, process and acknowledge the experience- the journey. Why do we hear of the crying baby but not the crying parent? Birth, nursing, and parenting is messy. They bring out our greatest strengths and wave red flags announcing our weaknesses.This time will be dedicated to gather around our peers and tell the stories of our milk.
*this session will be a Circle created for caregivers to participate and share their Milk Stories.
Preparing for Your Postpartum Period
As a Certified Postpartum Doula, Erin Huiatt helps women plan for their postpartum period and supports them physically as they transition into motherhood.
Erin believes that physical support is important, but also knows that it is vital to have a postpartum plan in place also. She has created The Postpartum Plan Workbook which guides women to plan for their postpartum period. This guide is created for the new mom, partner, friends, families, doula or any one else who may be supporting her during this time.
Erin will discuss the need for a proper postpartum period for all moms, she will talk about postpartum care in America compared to around the worl
d, and will go through some major sections of her workbook including creating a list of resources including details about your local Babywearing International chapter.
Onbuhimos, a Carrier for Every Body Type
In this session we will discuss onbuhimo anatomy, styles and fit techniques. Attendees will gain knowledge in how to fit onbuhimo’s to various body types and work to strategize troubleshooting for frequent fit issues. We will also discuss the benefits to both the wearer and wearee in a high back carry.
Tips & Tricks with BabyBjörn Baby Carriers
Stop by and learn about BABYBJÖRN’s newest carriers’ features and best practices while carrying small babies and toddlers.
Mom Bod: How Motherhood Affects How Our Minds and Bodies Function
Our proposed topic focuses on how becoming a mother impacts the structure and function of our body. Dr. Jennifer Thompson, a certified prenatal, pediatric, and family wellness chiropractor, will discuss the postural changes that occur during pregnancy and postpartum, as well as how carrying our babies and children can play a huge role in the function of our mom bodies.
Dr. Thompson will provide tools and exercises to the audience during her presentation to help moms protect their bodies when they are pregnant, breastfeeding, and carrying their children, both in and out of babywearing. She will address some of the different popular carriers and how they can impact the mother’s posture, and what to do if a carrier is causing discomfort.
Dr. Thompson will also address the benefit of babywearing to the child’s developing spine and nervous system during this talk.
Busting Myths of Stretchy Wraps
Think a stretchy is only for the fourth trimester? Think again! In this session we’ll expand the versatility of the stretchy wrap, demonstrating techniques and troubleshooting for carrying with the stretchy’s fullest potential. We’ll talk about how to “plant the seed” to encourage caregivers to keep on stretch-wrapping and we’ll have hands-on fun that will get you making the most of your wrap to its max weight limit.
Bring your stretchy to get hands on; a limited number of carriers will be provided for use during the session.
Babywearing Bosses: Work/Passion Balance
Turning your passion into a business is a tricky balancing act. If you have considered striking out as an entrepreneur in a babywearing-related business (and beyond), join this lighthearted panel discussion of folks who are working to make it work.
>To be or not to be?
>Money. Or not so much. — Defining success.
>Customer-facing work and back-of-the-house work.
>Framing yourself as a businessperson.
Babywearing & the Millennial Generation
Millennials are researching and buying products in ways unique to this generation, influenced greatly by online purchasing options, social media and access to information in the palm of their hands.
In this session we’ll explore how this affects Millennial caregivers as parents, specifically how they research and purchase baby carriers, and seek information on how to use them, as well as what this means for educators, retailers, manufacturers, and future generations.
Finding Confidence in Your Teaching Voice
Learn how to be confident in your skills as a babywearer and educator. Receive tips on how to communicate the concepts you’re familiar with and develop your arsenal of teaching language. These concepts can be applied to all babywearing skills. Practice your education techniques on fellow attendees and receive peer and presenter feedback.
Beyond a Pair of Jeans
The past two IBCs we have explored the idea that buckle carriers are like a pair of jeans in that they all fit everyone a bit differently. In the past decade, the number of carrier manufacturers has boomed, bringing with it a rush of new buckle options. In this workshop, I will dive into the different types of carriers on the market and the many new features. From narrow seats, to forward facing out, to PFAs, and preschool carriers, let’s dig deep and find out what makes these carriers different from each other and how to adjust them to help find that sweet spot for yourself or the person you are helping! This session will have a wide variety of buckle carriers available to try on so you can see in person how these different adjustments work and make a difference in how they are worn.
Create Your Own Back Carry
Bring your wraps and demo doll and invent your own perfect carry in this fun, hands-on session. We will break wrapping down into the pass types and discuss the pros and cons of each type of pass. After learning the pass types, we will build two and three layer carries. Participants will leave the class with a wrap pass photo-glossary and the ability to invent a back carry that meets their exact needs.
Perla Robertson & Rachel Boarman
Tips for Teaching Back Wrapping
In this session, you will explore back wrapping teaching techniques. We will practice teaching loading the baby on the back using three methods, discuss how to prevent common back wrapping problems, and share teaching tips with other educators.
Ring Slings for Everyone
Ring slings are for everyone, at any time: front, back, side; walking, feeding, soothing. Not just “for short carries” or with a baby of a certain age, ring slings are one of the most versatile carriers. This session will discuss ring sling techniques and tips for infants through toddlers, with hints for helping new wearers as well. Both presenters are long-time wearers and educators, and definitely ring sling lovers.
“Aging Out” of Babywearing: Babywearing and Bonding with Your Three-, Four-, and Five-Year-Old, and Beyond
What happens when your child is three, four, or five, and babywearing starts to wind down? How do you stay close with your child, in the absence of such a handy and much-loved parenting tool and bonding time? Come hear the journeys of five caregivers who will share their personal experiences wearing both biological and adopted children across diverse ages and stages. Panel participants will address practical concerns, such as how carrier types and wearing situations may change when your child is a preschooler, but also emotional issues as well, which may arise when a caregiver’s identity shifts from no longer identifying first and foremost as “a babywearer.” Attendees will have time to ask questions and also to discuss their own experiences as well.
Panel on Social Media Strategy
Do you have questions about using social media to fulfill your goals? Come ask and learn from our panel made up of a variety of social backgrounds including hobby bloggers, community organizers, manufacturers, small business owners, chapter leaders, and more.
Panel participants include Amy Rainbow (BWI of Portland, Education Team Lead, Amy Wraps Babies), Brittany Snyders (Ethos Babywearing, Twice Loved and Modern), Diamond Redden (Carry On Newark, Black Magical Mermaid), Austin Rees (Breast Skin Sling, IBCLC, Maryland Sacred Sisterhood), Cynthia Soliz (social media law), Laura Brown (BabywearingLA, Mamabird Postpartum, Ergobaby), Val Trembacki Shaikh (BWI of Greater Houston, L.N.O. Babywearing, Babywearing Challenge), Kassondra Coxson (DBG Baby, BWI Webmaster), Courtney Powers (Gal in the Grey Hat, social media specialist), Laura Vitanova (BWI national social media)
BWI Education Team Panel
Meet the team behind Education at BWI! We’d love to introduce you to the team and our goals, tell you about projects current and upcoming, get your input on what we should be doing and researching, and learn more about how we can better serve our volunteers and members.
DIY A Weighted Demo Doll
In this session, you’ll learn to transform store-bought materials into a sturdy and dependable weighted doll for practicing babywearing. A full demo will be given along with resources for purchasing your own materials. A limited number of supplies are available on a first-come first-served basis, or bring your own for use during the session (email email@example.com for a supplies list)
Deep Listening Skills
One of the greatest gifts one has to offer in this lifetime is to really hear someone else. Hearing requires us to be totally selfless in that moment. For we cannot really accept and process another’s words and experience when all we hear is our own mind’s chatter. We cannot offer understanding of someone’s story when all we do is relate their experience to our experiences. Holding Space is a term used to represent being present with someone without bringing yourself into the situation. Holding space is a powerful practice that creates self awareness. This is a skill that energetically works in all your personal relationships, when leading support groups, or working with clients.
What is Baby Carriers Provided? Presentation and question and answer session.
Come hear about Baby Carriers Provided, our research projects, Hear from some of our partners, as well as our mission, and vision for the future. There will be time for questions during this session.
Baby Carriers Provided is a research-based, bridge building organization, providing the baby carrier and educational programming as a public health tool, aimed at addressing child neglect and abuse prevention, accident and incident prevention, and infant and caregiver mental, physical, and emotional health.
What Will Inspire Our Future Babywearing Leaders?
As we look to the future of the babywearing community, what will spark the next generation of educators and leaders? Through a PechaKucha style presentation, various educators share what ignited their passion for the practice of babywearing. Through the sharing of various stories and perspectives, presentation attendees and speakers will seek to pinpoint correlations between the stories shared and start to build a framework for how we might move forward. PechaKucha is a simple presentation format where you show 20 images, each for 20 seconds. These quick-paced, short format presentations will allow for a diverse, thought-provoking way to explore the motivations we have for becoming interested in babywearing and will allow time to engage in conversation with presentation attendees. (Presenters, currently, are to be determined and depending on time allowed, the presentations will lead to small group discussions).
Who did you trigger, offend, or even slight? Even our best intentions can go wrong.
If your work involves people, and a variety of people at that, then eventually you will witness, do, or say something that will trigger an offense or an emotional or physical reaction; even when that was not your intention. How you handle yourself in the moments following is critical to fostering a respectful relationship and developing trust. Leading from a space of compassion and acceptance you can take steps to prevent and minimize the risks and then making your work more successful. Preparedness will give you the confidence to handle the situation should the worst happen.
This seminar will cover and explore:
* What I mean by â€˜triggeringâ€™ and what that might look like in real-life.
* Understanding your role and boundaries to help you define how you will handle these situations.
* Your current work environments and the populations you are serving.
* How some carriers/techniques may impact people differently.
Likewise, we will discuss the prevalence of trauma that may bubble to the surface during the perinatal window so you may be more sensitive to the preciousness of this period. If you use/promote/teach baby carriers then please join us in this seminar.
Practical workshop: hips, spine, harnesses, injury; find your voice while incorporating your new knowledge.
Building on Dr. Price’s session on current biomechanical research and babywearing this hands-on working session will host a 4-step process designed to help you to incorporate what you have learned into your current work. *Dr. Price’s session is a prerequisite for this workshop.
The session will have several guided scenario stations dedicated to helping you hit the ground running when you return home.
* Work with dolls in varying casts and harnesses plus take the opportunity to explore positioning and use in different carriers.
* Take turns exploring cases where the adult wearer has different physical challenges or limitations: related to infant wearing and stability of adult wearer.
* Opportunity to practice answering and discussing common caregiver questions related to hips, spine, and overall infant development and babywearing. This is designed to assist you in developing your voice around sharing this new knowledge.
* Sharing your work and group reflection time.
Ring Sling Love
Learn to love your ring sling with tips, tricks and teaching techniques from Susanne. Her excitement over the ring sling and it’s flexibility from birth to big kid is contagious.
In this session we will review all the small details of adjustment, so getting the perfect fit becomes quick and easy. There will be a vast array of shoulder styles compared to show differences in construction and fit. Participants are welcome to bring a ring sling, a limited amount will be available at the session to borrow. A mix of presentation and hands on learning will provide the opportunity to try out techniques if desired.
Angélica de la Cruz
History of Mexican Rebozo
The history and diversity of Mexican rebozo. In this session you will be traveling in time in order to learn a little bit about: *The origin of the Mexican rebozo, * the influences behind it, * how it changes according to the region and time * and some of the different uses through the history. You will also be able to see in person different styles. Enjoy the trip!
Babywearing Meeting Inspirations
Are you currently leading a group and need fresh new ideas to keep people involved? Would you like to start meetings in your area? This panel will discuss the details surrounding running a successful meeting.
Structured or not? Drop-in or scheduled? Small or large? Library or helping? One leader or many? Ideas for how to provide support in a inclusive and equitable way. How to encourage growth and future leaders?
Volunteer run babywearing meetings: Where have we been and where are we going.
Volunteer run babywearing meetings have been a major feature of our community for more than 15 years. They underwent tremendous growth and lived through the advent of social media. This session will be a discussion of how these meetings have been used in the past and how we need to adapt to be able to keep that kind of community alive.
A panel of babywearing educators including Laura Brown and *more to be confirmed* will be moderated by Susanne Weber. We look forward to having a lively discussion that inspires everyone to return to their community to spread the babywearing love.
Woven Wrap Geekery
Would you like an intro to the jargon of woven wraps? Are you deep into the world of wovens and can’t get enough chatter about wrap qualities? Do you talk the talk but want to know more about WHY different fiber blends and weaves behave differently? Come one, come all for a relaxed panel about woven wrap geekery terminology. We will discuss trends, do some comparisons to highlight how manufacturers make yarns behave differently, and get into the minutiae as we answer your questions.
Double Hammock Variations
The infamous Double Hammock. That ever so versatile woven wrap back carry. Mastering it is a sure fire signal that you are truly wrapper.
Every week there seemed to be a new “finish” or Double Hammock Variation. So many it can be hard to keep up. This is a very important growth in the babywearing community. This proves wrappers are expressing themselves as a wearer and trying to share knowledge with others. And trying new things to grow their confidence.
A Double Hammock is a carry that features two sling passes over baby’s….but some carries that are called double hammock only have one. And often features a chest pass—but it does not have to! Some have reinforcing passes and some do not!
It’s a complicated list of variations that can be broken down into four categories—tied in front, tied under bum, tied at shoulder, and tied at chest.
The Great Competition of Weavers – The Natural World
A presentation of the entries into the IBC 2018 Great Competition of Weavers. Each entry will be displayed and reviewed by our lovely emcee, Kim, of Honour Handwovens. This year’s GCOW theme is The Natural World. Join us to celebrate the magic of weaving, and explore how each artist interpreted the theme through their wraps! The session will feature an overview of the Great Competition of Weavers, an explanation of the three voting categories, and a Q&A portion. All weavers attending IBC are encouraged to attend.
CPSC: Best Practices for Safety
Will Cusey (CPSC’s Deputy Small Business Ombudsman) will speak to attendees at the International Babywearing Conference in Des Moines, IA. The presentation, titled CPSC: Best Practices for Safety, will delve into product safety strategies to help businesses stay one step ahead of the CPSC’s testing and certification requirements for baby carriers. Additionally, the presentation will demonstrate provide an update of CPSC regulatory news and activities in the past year.
Introduction to social justice concepts
Dip into some of the jargon used in current social justice discussions and begin understanding how these concepts can help build community, improve how effectively you support others around you, and perhaps even unpack some emotional baggage that might be limiting your freedom and happiness. Participants must have personal or professional goals that are compatible with a commitment to treating others and themselves with compassion and respect.
This is a workshop for whose who struggle to respond to oppressive and offensive comments in a way that feels authentic and useful. For those who come up with all the comebacks — after the jerks are gone. For those who feel trapped in work or social situations but want to push for change. We will discuss and practice understanding difficult situations and navigating them better. Please note that addressing trauma-related reactions from a therapeutic standpoint is outside the scope of the facilitator’s expertise, though participants would be welcome to speak from their own experiences. If you will be joining and have specific concerns about highly charged topics, please contact us to discuss these before planning to attend.
Interactive unpacking workshop: Getting unstuck
In this workshop, you will get to share specific, personal issues and anecdotes that reflect your negative feelings — bitterness, exclusion, or “reverse -isms” — and complaints, critiques, and personal reservations. These may be about relationships or groups you’re in (in person or on social media) or your willingness to support specific activists or movements (such as Black Lives Matter, the decriminalization of sex work, gender expansive identities, prison abolition, or any other controversial topic). We will pick topics that fit the time given, and the group will, with the facilitator’s guidance, analyze and begin unpacking them, so that attendees can gain insight into what “unpacking” might look like for others. Participants will have a chance to build resilience and practice breaking down personal barriers to understanding complex situations. Attendance of “Introduction to social justice concepts” and “Handling microaggressions” is recommended but not required.
Interactive unpacking workshop: Difficult topics with kids
If you’re overwhelmed by the amount of information you think your children are going to need in the world… If you are worried about how to explain concepts like consent, violence, racism, reproduction, sexuality, gender beyond the cis and binary, current events, and more, this session may be of help to you. Participants will “handle” specific examples and ideally depart with greater confidence in their own abilities to build and maintain trust with their children and assess the information we are bombarded with today. Attendance of “Introduction to
social justice concepts” and “Handling microaggressions” is recommended but not required.
Interactive unpacking workshop: Cultural competence in professional environments
Let’s say you have your advocacy all polished up for personal interactions, but you’re still hesitant to act when at work or volunteering for a nonprofit group. Or perhaps you have identified problems in your workplace or industry but aren’t sure how to address them. Deciding how you will choose to act on what you know isn’t easy, but you’re not alone. We invite professionals in any field to join this session to engage in a facilitated discussion. We will analyze and hopefully address personal barriers to applying your knowledge in ways that help as many people as possible. Attendance of “Introduction to social justice concepts” and “Handling microaggressions” is recommended but not required.
Cole Williams is the creator of Cole Speaks LLC. and the project Director of the Evolution of a Son to a Father; Which is a workshop series facilitated by Cole and his young adult son Nate. It is a moving and revelatory series of workshops and conversations that explores his journey from growing up fatherless, to becoming a single teenage father, to reuniting with his biological father, to fostering and adopting
Cole Williams is a parent, mentor, and community leader in Grand Rapids Michigan. He has over ten years of experience working with adolescent males who come from abuse and neglectful backgrounds, and who have been diagnosed with ADHD, ODD, RAD and many other Diagnoses.
In conjunction to ‘The Evolution of a Son to a Father, Cole Williams provides parent coaching to parents and families through the 17th District Family Court
Division. Where he walks alongside parents who have children with challenging behaviors.
Cole Williams is also a Motivational Speaker, Keynote Speaker & Trainer where he provides Professional Speaking Services through Cole Speaks, LLC. Cole produces trainings for organizations and agencies in the Child Welfare System who support and empower Underserved Communities and Families.
Cole has also developed curricula that explore the journey of Fatherhood for incarcerated fathers, teen fathers, and father’s in re-entry programing. Cole’s most recent work has been dedicated to providing Fatherhood training, support, and materials for the Michigan Adolescent Pregnancy and Parenting Program (MI-APPP), The Kent County Juvenile Detention Center, and the Michigan Department of Corrections.
Interchange, BCIA-EC, NPA, BWI of Greater Houston
Angelique Geehan works to question and depolarize the many cultural beliefs and practices that can deprive individuals of needed connection with themselves, their families, their clients, and their communities. She offers lectures, consultations, and trainings on babywearing, cultural awareness, and community building for families, birth and health care professionals, and retail and manufacturer staff to help seed communities with as much unconditional compassion and authenticity as possible, while helping families get through their days more easily.
Through Interchange, she offers social justice and cultural competency consulting for individuals and organizations. She also serves as the non-board chair of the Baby Carrier Industry Alliance Educator Committee; on the Transcultural Committee for the National Perinatal Association; and as a training coordinator for BWI of Greater Houston, for which she is also a Master Babywearing Educator.
Angelique Warner is the Founder and President at A Warner Idea LLC, the parent company of GoGoVie Premium Baby Carrier. It has been said that “Need is the mother of all invention” and indeed, GoGoVie was birthed out of a need.
Active moms have a lot to do. Sitting for 30 minutes while baby is feeding, twins are potty training, 4 year old is flipping around, and 14 others are doing ‘God knows what’, should not be one of them! As an active mother of four, then ages four and younger, also with up to 14 other children living in their home; 5 years at a group home and 11 years at a boarding school, Angelique lived through the ultimate active lifestyle and created a Premium Baby Carrier. In fact, she is the first African American woman to manufacture a baby carrier in the USA!
GoGoVie has been featured in What To Expect as 1 of 7 Biggest Baby Gear Trends Spotted at the 2017 ABC Kids Expo and it was at this expo that Angelique was also interviewed by MomTV. You may soon spot Angelique in an upcoming video series by What To Expect on Mom Inventors.
Robyn Reynolds Miller is an MS graduate of the University of Central Oklahoma in May, 2018. She has been employed as a nurse educator since 2003 in both a large acute care hospital and since 2016 as adjunct faculty for Oklahoma State University school of nursing. Robyn has volunteered as a babywearing educator for Babywearing International since April 2013 and has delivered lectures about babywearing to healthcare professionals and babywearing educators since October 2013, including the International Babywearing Conferences held in 2014 and 2016. Robyn has published an article in Creative Nursing in February 2016 outlining potential benefits of babywearing. Robyn’s graduate thesis was “What is the Experience of Babywearing a NICU Graduate?” and will be co-presenting those results at the International Conference of Nurse Science and Practice in London, UK in August, 2018.
Kristi Hayes-Devlin, BS Ed. and babywearing educator, is the founder and first chairwoman of the Baby Carrier Industry Alliance and the founder of Wrapsody, LLC. She’s best known for her work in baby carrier compliance and her focus on best practices in education. Kristi is a coach and educator who excels at making things clearer for families and businesses, challenging them to connect with their best selves. She’s a single mother of 5 living in Maine and now works as the North American Carrier Manager for Cybex.
Jenny Wood has been passionate about helping parents feed and bond with their babies for over a decade. She worked as a WIC peer breastfeeding counselor for seven years and has been a La Leche League Leader for the last 5 years. She became an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant in 2016 and has been working with Basking Babies as a private practice lactation consultant since 2017. Jenny geeks out over evidence based research that supports parents as they feed and nurture their babies in the ways that feel right to them. She enjoys supporting parents to follow their instincts and trust their babies instincts as well. Jenny also has a bachelors degree in education and she loves teaching parents and other caregivers about evidence based practices that are supportive of human milk feeding.
Susanne leads the Winnipeg Babywearers and runs Carry Kiss Connect, providing babywearing classes, consultations and car seat checks. She is passionate about supporting families while adding to their parenting toolbox. Susanne has been active in the babywearing community since her eldest daughter was born 10 years ago, first learning and sharing virtually through The Babywearer forum. After the birth of her second daughter in 2014 she completed training through Center for Babywearing Studies and joined the leadership of her local group. Susanne was previously a secondary teacher and her love of sharing information permeates her life. She truly believes knowledge is power.
Krystal Santos, PT, DPT is a handwoven enthusiast turned weaver. She is the owner and operator of Wild Child Handwovens. She has 2 children and lives in Pennsylvania, USA with her husband and 2 cats.
Kathy has been a babywearing educator for over 6 years. She started wearing with the birth of her first child in 2010 and has worn all three of her own children. Kathy recalls the overwhelming feeling when first shopping for a carrier and wants to help other caregivers be successful in finding the carrier best suited to their needs. She is from the Grand Rapids, Michigan. In addition to babywearing; she enjoys gardening, baking with her children, reading, and taking naps. Kathy is a Certified Babywearing Educator by the Center for Babywearing Studies. She also volunteers with the local babywearing group. She created Babywearing With Kathy in 2016 in order to offer private and small group consultations, presentations on a variety of babywearing related topics, and Skype consultations for non-local caregivers.
Joanna McNeilly is the founder of the Center for Babywearing Studies. She teaches, trains, and lectures on all things related to babywearing and the parent-infant relationship. Since 2004, Joanna has worked directly with caregivers to assist in their understanding of their infant, strengthen the bond with their new child, and have a successful transition into parenthood; in large part through the use of a baby carrier. Joanna continues to infuse her knowledge of person-centered communication, teaching, infants, and babywearing into her unique curriculum for babywearing consultants, educators, volunteers, and others who wish to support the use of baby carriers in their work. Not content to settle down, Joanna launched the BOND Conference (coming again in 2019). An interdisciplinary conference that brings together perinatal practitioners, academics, and researchers. The focus is to facilitate more meaningful work while creating a space for lasting connections. The mutual goal is to strengthen familial bonds, provide support for new caregivers, and increase awareness within local communities.
Arie is a ClauWi trained Certified Babywearing Educator, Lactation Educator and writer. She & her business partner opened Tadpoles & Butterflies in 2006. Arie’s experience includes consulting with Health Canada, provincial health regions and First Nations with the intent of using babywearing to improve public health outcomes, as well as working directly with parents as a retail store owner, lactation consultant, babywearing consultant and birth & postpartum doula. She speaks at conferences and workshops across North America. Arie above all, is a homeschooling mama to three boys.
Priscilla Parra is the Community and Social Media Manager at Baby Tula and a Volunteer Babywearing Educator with the Portland, Oregon chapter of Babywearing International. Before becoming falling in love with all things babywearing related, Priscilla was an art educator, curator, public programs manager. Her ability to make art palpable and interactive now informs her babywearing education and community engagement. She has been a babywearing enthusiast for over 6 years and is certified by the Center for Babywearing Studies. Through her work at Baby Tula and her local babywearing community, Priscilla aims to make carrying your baby an empowering and memorable time for new families and caregivers.
Kim Taylor (alias Kay Tay or KT) is a 30 something military spouse who owns Honour Handwovens. She weaves along side two other weavers (Sarah Rawlings, formerly Wild Poppy Handwovens, and Jenny Carpineta, formerly Chaos Theory Weaving,) out of Maryland, USA. She has worn many self-employment hats on her journey as a textile connoisseur, and has been very fortunate to be able to pick up her craft and move it along with her in their many relocations across the country. Honour Handwovens was created in 2016, and focused on hand crafted goodness, made in the US, and with recycled yarn produced in the US as a signature fiber blend. She does not enjoy writing things about herself, but would like everyone to know that she waves the Geek flag extremely hard, and that you should ask any and all appropriate (or inappropriate) questions you may have in person. Or messenger, if that’s your style.
Henrik Norholt, Ph.D. Chief Science Officer, Ergobaby Inc. — Dr. Norholt’s primary research focus is the effects of extended parent-infant contact. He is engaged in developing research into novel parent-infant interventions through his international network of researchers and clinicians within psychology, pediatrics, orthopedics, obstetrics, breastfeeding medicine, health visiting and midwifery. Outcomes for the research include attachment and long-term parental and child physiological and psychological health. The research spans a wide range of scientific topics, including amongst others child and adult brain and hormonal adaptation, attachment theory, perinatal stress and resilience processes, child socio-emotional regulation and pediatric orthopedics. He is a frequent lecturer and external academic thesis supervisor at various early years practitioners’ universities, colleges, association meetings and international conferences. He is a member of The World Association of Infant Mental Health, The International Association for the Study of Affective Touch as well as The Society of Emotion and Attachment Studies. He holds a Ph.D. from the Faculty of Life Science at Copenhagen University and is a resident of Copenhagen, Denmark.
Katie Nyberg is the owner of The Iowa Baby Lady, LLC. She is a certified labor and postpartum doula, educator, CAPPA Faculty and doula trainer, and community speaker. She has a passion for new mothers and this unique time in a parent’s life. She was originally a grade school teacher and continues her passion of educating her community by teaching others about the postpartum time. Katie has been featured in International Doula Magazine as well as numerous articles about her business in local TV stations and newspapers. Katie has presented for various health organizations in her home state of Iowa, as well as at the 2017 CAPPA International Conference.
Cortney Baca is a babywearing parent of two and the founder of Babywearing NM. She believes that all caregivers should have access to the tools they want to fit their lifestyles. She has been wearing her babies since 2010 even though they’re much bigger now, and has been helping families babywear with peer to peer knowledge since 2011.
Rebecca Morse is a mom of 3, and Founder of Baby Carriers Provided a nonprofit dedicated to integrating baby carriers into WIC and other public health and child abuse prevention programs. She is also the Infant Parenting and Breastfeeding Prep. Instructor as St. Joseph’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, MI. In addition she serves the community with a baby carrier and lactation private practice specializing in families facing unique challenges such as multiples or premature birth. She individually, or sometimes in tandem with her husband Kyle, serves families expecting or with new babies in their homes and at the hospital. Their goals are to make the transition into becoming a parent as easy and stress free as possible by providing specialized knowledge about infant behavior and neurology as well as safe infant product use and active soothing techniques. Becca is a Certified Kangaroo Caregiver from the USIKC, a Child Passenger Safety Technician, Certified Babywearing Educator from the Clau Wi School of Babywearing, as well as a Certified Lactation Counselor.
Christina Michaud is a professor of linguistics and women’s studies by day, and avid babywearer and supporter of new parents/caregivers by night and on weekends. She teaches babywearing classes through daycares and neighborhood groups.
This superhero origin story starts with a couple of geeky gals who met in an online forum and quickly learned they had a lot in common. Besides many shared fandoms, Marisa, a Graphic Designer, and Kassondra, a Web Developer, both had a love for
crafting in their spare time. They decided to join their forces to create and sell some geek-themed goodness. DBG Baby is the woven wrap line from Designed by Geeks, their fandom-inspired design company.
Jay McMillin is a Professional Babywearing Educator, Lactation Educator, Certified Kangaroo Consultant, and mother of 2. She is trained and certified through the Center for Babywearing Studies as a Babywearing Consultant, has completed the University of California San Diego Certified Lactation Educator training, and became certified in 2017 as A Kangaroo Consultant through the United States Institute of Kangaroo Care. She is a University of California Berkeley graduate, and holds a degree in Ethnic Studies. Jay has years of experience as a postpartum educator, and has been fortunate to be a part of hundreds of families breastfeeding and babywearing journeys. She is the current Board President and an Advanced Babywearing Educator with Babywearing International of the Bay Area, and an active leader in her local La Leche League group. She serves on the Santa Clara County Breastfeeding Task Force, and has been instrumental in incorporating her local BWI group into the ongoing dialogue of parent support in their community. Jay teaches prenatal and postpartum parenting classes in support of Infant Carrying and Breastfeeding at Tiny Tots in Campbell, California and throughout the Greater Bay Area, as well as on her educational blog ModernBabywearing.com
Rachel Boarman is a Certified Babywearing Consultant, trained by the Center for Babywearing Studies (CBWS). Rachel has completed both the foundations (2013) and progressions (2015) trainings through CBWS. In addition to holding a certification as a babywearing consultant, Rachel volunteers as a Master Babywearing Educator for Babywearing International of Southern Maryland, which she founded in 2012. Rachel served for two years (2013-2015) on the Board of Directors for Babywearing International as the Education Coordinator. Rachel has helped hundreds of caregivers and babies get comfortable with their baby carrier and aims to help everyone find joy and simplicity in babywearing.
Lori is an avid wearer and has worn her “babies” (Now 7 and 5!) since they were born. She holds an MS Ed in Higher Education, a BA in Sociology, with a minor in Womens and Gender Studies and is certified as a Postpartum Doula, Babywearing Educator, and Breastfeeding Educator. Lori owns Uplift Babywearing, a baby carrier consulting and postpartum doula business. She is also part owner of a small home bakery, BareMama. When she is not working, baking, or surviving real life with small children, she volunteers with BWI of Greater Austin as a Master Babywearing Educator and with Pregnancy & Postpartum Health Alliance of Texas as a Postpartum Doula. Through her experiences in her studies, career, volunteer work, and as a mother, Lori found her passion helping others as they embrace their journey welcoming a new addition home. She loves working with families in the days, weeks, and months after adding a child to their family. Lori believes in a family-centered approach to the postpartum period and supporting them as they find their strength and confidence.
Angélica grew up in a family of doctors and studied professionally hotel management, she has showed interest in 3 main topics: Love, science and service. Her desire to learn constantly and serve people always guided her in different ways. When she became a mother of her second child, her world transformed and babywearing opened her mind and heart to all possibilities to connect with this new baby and to repair the past with her oldest. Now through contact and attachment she has been able to accompany many Mexican families, her babywearing experience goes back to 10 years with Mexican rebozo and 4 with other carriers, she has been trained as an educator by 4 babywearing schools and other topics such as BLW, infant massage by IAIM, breastfeeding, maternity with CONTINUUM, coaching and infant sleep by Terra Mater. She is the founder of “Fulares y más” where she actively promotes babywearing and is member of the administration at RPPM (Red de profesionales de porteo en México) which is the Mexican babywearing educators network. Her slogan and motto is “Creciendo en amor” which means “Growing in love” because that is how she really believes the society and world will change.
Baby carrying has been a passion for Laura for almost a decade. Since the birth of her first child, she has dedicated herself to providing support and information to parents throughout the birth and postpartum period. In addition to being a babywearing educator, she is also a Full Spectrum Doula, Lactation Educator and CPST. Based in Los Angeles, she is also Education + Community Outreach for Ergobaby.
Jaime Gassmann is the founder, owner, and CEO of the woven baby carrier company Bijou Wear, est. 2015. Jaime became an entrepreneur because she needed a SAHM-sized job that was also portable and rewarding. She holds a deep commitment to fostering the entrepreneurial endeavors of folks in the juvenile products niche and more broadly in her local community. Jaime holds a Ph.D. in American Studies (cultural sociology). Her dissertation focuses on the volunteer labor of Army spouses and was the starting point for a lifelong analysis of why and how people become leaders.
Amy Rainbow didn’t make up her last name, but she did make up a series of stretchy wrap carries and infographic reviews on her blog, Amy Wraps Babies. Amy volunteers as a babywearing educator with her local chapter BWI of Portland, OR, helping local wearers through education and in her position as Outreach Chair. She also works in Portland as a Childbirth Educator, car seat safety technician, and certified babywearing consultant. When not educating, she can be found with her family of three kids, one husband, and one black lab.
Dr. Jennifer Thompson, DC, CACCP is a Certified Prenatal, Pediatric, and Family Wellness Chiropractor from Des Moines, IA. Dr. Jen, as her patients call her, loves caring for the entire family, and aims to help families meet their health goals. As a mom of 3, Dr. Jen lends first hand experience to her pregnant and post partum moms on topics beyond chiropractic and is a resource for any mom looking to improve the health and wellbeing of their family.
Erin is passionate about supporting women and families after birth. As a Certified Postpartum Doula she enjoys working with families from the moment they become parents throughout their parenthood by offering resources and tools through her doula services and two websites, Midwest Mom & Wife and Des Moines Parent. Erin is a reliable resource and stepping stone for women and families to find support and make connections within our community. She wants women and families to feel confident to reach out and ask for help and advice to get pointed in the right direction.
Will Cusey is currently serving as the Deputy Small Business Ombudsman at the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), and has previously served in the CPSC’s Office of Legislative Affairs. Additionally, Will has held positions with the National Transportation Safety Board and with the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce. Will received his Bachelor’s degree from upstate New York-based Skidmore College and attained a Master’s in Political Communication from American University’s School of Public Affairs. Will is happily married and the proud father of a 9 month old baby girl.
The “AYU loves kids program” is a sustainable business concept with baby carriers at its core and far reaching social and cultural implications with a result of a non-traditional social emphasis. Is an idea conceived by a mother for new parents that has developed a unique network of women working together on post-natal and child rearing initiatives. Valeria, the founder and author of “Ready to go”, is a mother of three, lawyer, prenatal/ postnatal certified educator, and doula. The program enables: – Work with communities. – Promotes sales through foundations that benefit from the sale of products and works with entities that offer protection to underprivileged children via educational activities. – Single and stay at home parents sell baby carriers, obtaining them for a low cost. Is a cross-functional platform intended to support and encourage single and new parents to become active in a stay at home business model while providing outreach to children nationwide. – Protect the environment working with Ecofriendly fabrics for the carriers and taking raw material excess from the production process to make babywearing dolls and help single mothers who makes them. – Provide free information about breastfeeding, babywearing and parenting well supported.
Perla Robertson is mama to four babes between the ages of 5 and 10, all who have been worn since birth. She didn’t know a single other babywearer until her second child was about six months old, which was when she attended a babywearing meeting for the first time. She made some wonderful friendships there and learned many tips and tricks. The main part of her babywearing education came from TBW (thebabywearer.com), where she spent hours and hours asking questions, answering questions, and getting to know people. (denimmeitai) She became a VBE for DC-MD-VA in 2011, but moved to Illinois shortly thereafter. She eventually founded the Chambana chapter in July of 2014. She volunteers as a Master Babywearing Educator for BWI of Chambana. Perla also serves on the board of directors for Babywearing International as the treasurer. Perla holds a Masters of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Illinois and is working toward a Masters of Music Education degree. She feeds her musical soul by singing at local Music Club meetings, singing with choirs, and accompanying the choirs at a local highschool. When she’s not babywearing or doing music, she is busily loving on her children and hubby of 14 years.
Samantha loves to hike and wear her babies. She turned to babywearing yo help get parent get oldest child and continue her love for getting outdoor with him. She is a ABE with Babywearing International of Portland, runs a parenting blog focused on babywearing, and is a certified babywearing consultant with her own business Reddy Babywearing. She specializes in newborn wearing and hiking carriers.
Ingrid is a contemporary dancer (INBA) and mom who has dedicated the last 5 years to prepare herself as a Dance-Movement Therapist (SENSOSANZA, A.C.), Babywearing Educator (Center for Babywearing Studies) and Breastfeeding Promotor (Nestlé Mexico). She works within her local community helping families and caregivers who are interested in finding more and better ways to bond and care for their babies through DMT (Dance-movement Therapy), Babywearing and Breastfeeding. She is a mom of two handsome boys and wife of a very loving husband.
Lela Rankin Williams, Ph.D., is an associate professor at Arizona State University and has done her doctoral and post-doctoral training in infant/child development. After becoming a parent she realized how beneficial babywearing was to her personally, and the potential usefulness it had for other families struggling with mental illness and caregiver-infant attachment, yet she had never read about babywearing in her studies. So, she designed a randomized intervention study in the community to empirically test the benefits of babywearing. Developing an evidence-base for the effectiveness of babywearing as a parenting tool is a big step towards bringing it into more accessible settings (e.g., pediatricians’ offices, child welfare services, non-profit programs and agencies).
Austin Rees is dedicated to enhancing caregivers’ parenting journeys through sharing the foundations of breastfeeding, skin-to-skin, and babywearing. Austin is the owner of Breast+Skin+Sling and has volunteered as a La Leche League Leader for over 10 years. She became an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant in 2011. Austin is a Certified Babywearing Consultant through Center for Babywearing Studies. She holds a BA in Biology from Hollins University. Austin resides in Baltimore, MD with her husband and their four free-spirited children.
Charles T. Price, MD is Professor of Orthopedic Surgery at University of Central Florida College of Medicine, and Medical Director of the International Hip Dysplasia Institute – an international research consortium with focused research for prevention and treatment of hip dysplasia. Dr. Price has published more than 100 scientific publications. In 2011, Dr. Price received the Distinguished Achievement Award from POSNA for his contributions to the advancement of pediatric orthopedics.
Erin Mannen, Ph.D. is a Biomechanical Engineer, Assistant Prof. Dept. of Orthopedics and Director of Orthopedic Research at Univ. of Arkansas.
Catherine P. Starnes, Ph.D., is an assistant professor at Belmont University. She earned her PhD in Epidemiology and Biostatistics from the University of Kentucky where she did her doctoral research on methodologic challenges in community trials. She has particular interests in the topic areas of women’s health, minority health outcomes, and maternal/child outcomes. Following the birth of her first child, she saw the personal benefits of babywearing experienced by herself and her husband and began to wonder why the use of baby carriers was not being talked about more widely in public health to address the public health crisis of the mental health and accompanying physical health struggles experienced by many families. So, she began to search for ways to contribute to the scientific literature base to help establish the use of baby carriers as an evidence based practice in public health. Establishing babywearing as an evidence based practice is a critical step in making baby carriers more widely accessible through settings such as healthcare providers’ offices, child welfare services, etc.
Lisa Reid is the creative force behind 2Lambie Creations. Born out of a need for necessity and a desire for comfort she designed a onbuhimo style carrier to fit her needs. Her designs are functional and stylish as she partners with machine woven and handwoven companies alike to source fabrics used in her carrier. As her children have grown she’s also moved on to adding handbags, lovies and various wrap scrap creations for those not in a babywearing stage of their life. This busy mom of 3 believes that babywearing is an important tool in your child care basket.