Open Arms held its Annual Meeting on Friday evening, a gathering for doulas, staff, board and friends to say thank you, to honor those who work so hard for our clients, and to celebrate accomplishments and look forward to a new year!
The Annual Meeting was bittersweet as we said good-bye to Open Arms’ first paid Executive Director and later Board member Lisa Chin. Lisa started the Open Arms partnership with the White Center Early Learning Initiative (WCELI) and our now thriving Outreach Doula program. After handing the reins to Sheila Capestany, our current Executive Director, Lisa moved on to provide much expertise and guidance by serving on our Board of Directors. Lisa is now the Executive Director of Year Up in the Puget Sound region, and we know she will help them achieve great things. We’re sorry to see you go, Lisa, but wish you well on your exciting new endeavor and know you’ll remain a friend of Open Arms!
Other business included introducing new board members Sharon Cunnington, Sabrina Urquhart and Kelly Beeken, MD.
Open Arms also recognized several of our doulas who made a huge difference in the past year. All of our doulas are an essential part of our organization and we’re grateful for each and every one, but each year we try to recognize several of our doulas who really go above and beyond. This year, Open Arms presented the Social Justice and Advocacy Award twice, to Lynn Lambie and Down to Earth Doulas Vanna Waldron and Rebecca Allen. The Volunteer Award was presented to Candace Barber, and the New Doula Who Really Rose to the Occasion Award was presented to Angie Sanderson. Thank you to all our doulas who serve our clients.
And – we learned something new. For years, we’ve said that we support 7 languages – but that is outdated information! We’ve tallied it up and are proud to announce that Open Arms now serves our clients in 15 languages: English, Spanish, French, Italian, American Sign Language, Nepali, Japanese, Korean, Somali, Oromo, Turkish, German, Amharic, Cantonese and Mandarin!
In a few weeks, we’ll share our end-of-the-year statistics and outcomes with you. Til next time…