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Road of Hope

Bridging Healthcare Gaps: Collective Cultural Research Initiative for Refugee and Migrant Women in Amsterdam.

Partnering with GGD, Somastel, Nisa 4 Nisa, and VU (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam), The Road of Hope Foundation led a research initiative called “Collectief Cultuureel Onderzoek” (CCO) or “Collective Cultural Research” in English, which aims to bridge the gap between healthcare professionals and pregnant women or mothers from 4 different backgrounds and nationalities (Syrians, Eritrean, Moroccan and Somali). The CCO gathered experiences from both groups, aiming to provide intercultural training for professionals to improve the healthcare support for newcomer women during pregnancy and after childbirth. It started in August 2022 and ended in July 2023, presenting its first results.

 Research coordinators and representatives of the collaborating organizations in 2023.
Research coordinators and representatives of the collaborating organizations in 2023.

Developments in this collaboration

As part of the challenge of developing knowledge that would promote a real impact on the quality of life of refugee women, we gathered stories from 32 interviewed women from 4 cultures and created a play telling stories on how newcomers and migrants have experienced working with healthcare professionals.
What does the experience of pregnancy and childbirth look like for newly arrived women with a refugee background? What is it like to deal with cultural differences in the face of the common challenges of motherhood?
These are some of the issues addressed by the play “Cultureluurs”, which brings to the stage the experience of migrant women from their first 1,000 days of motherhood, from pregnancy onwards, with health professionals.

“Cultureluurs” being played by a group of volunteers on June 13th at Ru Paré.

The initiative to present the play comes from GGD Amsterdam’s Healthy and Promising Start (GKS) program, which organizes local network meetings in the three boroughs of North, New West and South East with the goals of strengthening collaborations, building new knowledge and inspiration for participants and encouraging action that will improve the practical work of professionals.

As a result of this tremendous collaborative contribution, the stories played on “Cultureluurs” will also become an e-book art illustrated, which will soon become available for free download on the Road of Hope website.