Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies of Broward

Mother holding baby on her lap and playing. Happy little boy looking at mother.
Mother holding baby on her lap and playing. Happy little boy looking at mother.

There are guardian angels in Broward County. These angels are not the kind with wings. In fact, they are ordinary people like you and me. They are, however, looking out for the most helpless of us all: infants. These angles help disadvantaged pregnant women and new mothers through their pregnancies and the first year of their babies’ lives. 

Local charity Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition of Broward County, has been helping up to 4,000 local families at a time for over 20 years. The 501(c)3’s mission is to reduce infant deaths by strengthening families through a comprehensive approach to prenatal care, parenting, education, and support services.

About 1 of every 200 babies born in Broward County don’t make it to their first birthday. For minorities and economically disadvantaged groups, the data are even worse. Black babies are four times more likely to die in their first year of life than white babies. Poor mothers are less likely to seek and have access to prenatal care than wealthier mothers. 

Healthy Mothers focuses its work on the five Broward zip codes with the highest infant mortality rate. One of the organization’s signature programs, The Mahogany Project, provides intensive case management services to in-need mothers, including:

Prenatal Support

Childbirth Education

Breastfeeding Education

Nutrition Education

Support Groups

Individual Counseling

Medical Case Management

The organization is led by Executive Director, Linda Cichon, who started with the Healthy Mothers 23 years ago. “My involvement in this effort is personal. I had a baby that was stillborn. I stayed connected with a nurse that helped me through that moment in my life and began to volunteer. I guess, I never left.”

Cichon also highlighted one of the group’s most successful programs, its Teen Leadership Council. The Teen Council is comprised of dedicated teen volunteers from many area high schools. The young people lead Healthy Mothers’ Grab N Go Lunch program. They have delivered more than 2,000 meals to in-need families during this unprecedented time. The students truly embrace their mantra of Saving Lives, Guiding Futures and Inspiring Hope.

In addition to meals, mentorship and education, Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies offers pregnant women and new moms classes on how to make healthier meals ,as well as ,supplying healthy produce to the families.

It is a comfort to know that the families most in need are being watched over by guardian angels from Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies.