Vashon Island Midwifery will present a screening and panel discussion with the filmmaker of “Give Light,” a film that amplifies the voices of Indigenous midwives, at 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 4, at Vashon Theatre.
In the film, documentary filmmaker Steph Smith crisscrosses the globe, questioning why the benefits of traditional midwifery practices are primarily absent in modern care for birthing families here in the United States.
The award-winning documentary — Smith’s directorial debut — is the culmination of 10 years of filming on five continents, with interviews of Indigenous midwives from remote regions in Belize, Brazil, Peru, Thailand, as well as Greece and the United States.
After the hour-long screening, audience members are invited to stay for a panel discussion with the director and local birthing experts.
“I think it’s important to bring generations together to learn more about birth and how it affects the community, “ said Kerri Johnson, traditional midwife and owner of Spa Ecydsis in Vashon Village.
Katelyn Costley, founder of Vashon Island Midwifery, an island nonprofit organization providing local and accessible reproductive healthcare and birth education services, partnered with Johnson to bring the film to the island.
“…The health of the mothers and babies being born into our community every year need our whole community’s support,” Costley said. “Addressing the physical, mental, and emotional health issues in our youth, teens, and young adults begins before birth, during pregnancy, and even pre-conception. We need systems that work together to care for our communities at large, and that includes a combined and applied approach of weaving ancient and traditional birthing practices in our otherwise modern society.”
Tickets to the screening, on sale at vashontheatre.com, cost $22 for general admission, and $15 for students and seniors. If the cost of a ticket is prohibitive, contact Vashon Island Midwifery for a waived fee.