2024 Faces of NOLA Family

2024 The Face of Maternal-Child Services

Shanika Valcour-LeDuff expected an easy journey ahead after finding out she was pregnant. After all, she had been a labor and delivery and postpartum nurse for years at that point, and she thought of herself as an expert. She thought she knew exactly what to expect; however, this was not the case.

Valcour-LeDuff thought to herself, “If it’s hard like this for me, how hard is it for women who don’t know all the ins and outs, and who aren’t trained to support people in these areas?” 

She knew she wanted to create an organization that could help women and their families with the same support she needed during her pregnancy and postpartum period.

Labor and Love was created to educate, advocate, and empower women, using their motherhood journey as a source of that empowerment. 

“We want women to know that this is an amazingly beautiful thing that your body’s able to do, that you were created to do,” says Valcour-Leduff, “But it’s not always easy. And when it’s not easy, we’re here as part of that village to make it a little bit more pleasant and to help you along the way.”

The list of services provided is seemingly endless: maternal-child health services, childbirth education, typical doula support (prenatal, during birth, and postpartum,) overnight doula support, lactation services, therapy services, and the Pink Product Pantry, which helps supply moms with products they may need for themselves and for baby at no cost. 

Valcour-LeDuff, now a Family Nurse Practitioner, and her amazing team led by even more healthcare providers, will continue to help as many families as they can throughout 2024 and beyond. Look out for Labor and Love as it expands to different areas in the city, and see the differences it makes continuing with local classes and services for moms and families, and trainings and mentorships for birth workers and doulas.

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