Before celebrating the birth of a healthy baby boy in July 2021, our Founder, Vu-An Foster, MPH, experienced two painful preventable pregnancy losses due to an incompetent cervix diagnosis and what she perceived as structural racism and implicit bias. To cope with her pregnancy losses, Vu-An joined a support group that consisted of other women experiencing depression and anxiety stemming from their experiences with miscarriage, pregnancy, and infant loss. While actively participating and connecting with the women in these groups, Vu-An observed a disconnect to which she desired to be a bridge.
First, Vu-An believed in the transformative power of community that can be leveraged to aid recovery. However, the support group format only led participants to relive their loss session after session, which only seemed to fuel the depression and anxiety instead of providing the empowerment needed to get back to a place where they could live with their loss healthily. Moreover, Vu-An realized that a number of other women and families, especially women and families of color, were silently hurting in isolation that could truly benefit from having a community to not only grieve with but also heal. It was then that Vu-An decided to be that resource.
Vu-An founded Life After 2 Losses. Soon after, she turned her emerging organization into a nonprofit to inform, support, and empower women, families, and communities to cope with miscarriage, pregnancy, and infant losses and provide strategies to prevent pregnancy losses. After surviving a life-threatening postpartum complication known as severe postpartum preeclampsia, she realized she needed to include educating women, families, and communities on how to be their own advocates during pregnancy, labor, and the postpartum period to prevent pregnancy-related deaths. Additionally, through Life After 2 Losses, Vu-An became committed to promoting policy development regarding infant and maternal mortality while addressing other racial disparities that disproportionately affect BIPOC women and children regarding health equity, implicit bias, and structural racism.