Racha Tahani Lawler is the granddaughter, great-granddaughter, great niece, and cousin of midwives. While working as a nurse assistant at a local hospital in the women’s wing, she was privileged and honored to train with a community midwife as an apprentice. Racha moved to El Paso, Texas where she completed her formal midwifery education and became a certified professional midwife and licensed midwife at Maternidad La Luz. Racha returned home to California with her family in 2007. She has been blessed to attend over 1,000 births in the United States and abroad. Racha gave birth to all three of her children, post date, at home in water and they have attended upwards of 100 births in their own right.
With the help of family, friends, and countless supporters, Racha opened The Community Birth Center. Originally a freestanding birthing center in South Los Angeles for three years, The Community Birth Center is now located in Mid-City Los Angeles. The Community Birth Center provides well woman/well person exams, pre-conception, prenatal, labor/birth, and postpartum care to an array of families. Racha is committed to providing midwifery care to ALL who seek it regardless of race, socio-economic status or gender. Her mission is to “Grow our community, one baby at a time,” providing support in the great maternal and child health care disparities seen with women of color.
Fighting everyday to reduce prematurity rates in African American women and their infant’s deaths, Racha is the recipient of both Congressional and Senate awards for her work as a midwife in California. She was acknowledged and awarded by the City of Los Angeles and her local counsel member. In 2013, Racha was privileged to receive the “Midwife of the Year” award from the Doula’s Association of Southern California. In March of 2015, she received the Lillian Mobley Community Service Award.
As she transitions into providing more historical, verbally passed down African midwifery, Racha continues to educate student midwives of color. Each year, Racha is guiding and mentoring new midwives of color to support the birthing community. Racha loves not only being a care provider, but also an active supporter in her community where she lives and raises her three children.