About

About Us

Mission

Atlanta Doula Connect (ADC) is an Emory University Urban Health Initiative (UHI) project developed to assist low-wealth adults and teens through labor and delivery with volunteer doula support. Volunteer doulas and expectant mothers sign up to be matched by our staff. The chosen doula will later guide the expectant mother through the labor and delivery.

Maternal mortality is defined as death during pregnancy or within one year of the end of pregnancy. Unfortunately, Georgia has one of the worst maternal mortality rates in the United States, with low-wealth and people of color suffering the most. ADC aims to reduce these rates by providing expectant mothers in need with doula support.

Staff

Picture of Dr. Carolyn Aidman

Carolyn Aidman, PhD, CLD

Program Mentor

Carolyn Aidman, PhD, CLD, develops programs, engages, and mentors Emory and other universities’ faculty, staff, student, and community members as volunteers, interns, and Fellows. She attracts them to initiatives such as Atlanta Doula Connect. 

She focuses on maternal mortality and morbidity, and supports healthy pregnancy spacing, which encourages delaying a second pregnancy until the first child is at least 18 months old and walking. 

Aidman received the 2015 Emory University Distinguished Staff Award and the Emory University 2017 Award for Mentorship. She is a graduate of the Partnership for Southern Equity’s Atlanta Resident Leaders for Equity Academy, 2021.

Dr. Aidman is a CAPPA and Before and After Certified Labor Doula who has been assisting at births since 1971 in birth centers, hospitals, and at homes.

Picture of Megna Rao

Megna Rao

Program Coordinator

Megna Rao recently graduated from Emory University, where she studied neuroscience and behavioral biology. She is currently a co-coordinator for the Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Mitigation Division of Urban Health Initiative (UHI) and oversees 4 projects, including Atlanta Doula Connect, to promote health equity. 

Megna is also a researcher on the Cancer Detecting Dogs project of UHI, a co-president for Emory’s Hospice Outreach, Perspectives, and Engagement (HOPE) organization, a researcher at the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Lab at Emory School of Medicine, and a medical scribe.

Fun fact: Megna is from Phoenix, Arizona

Temitope Michael-Olaniran (Fafore)

Program Volunteer

Temitope Michael-Olaniran (Fafore) is the founder and chief consultant of Little Ones PIECMH™ Consulting, an organization providing perinatal emotional readiness education to reduce the risk for Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders (PMADs) and developmental delays/disorders. 

She is a Ph.D. student specializing in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health and Developmental Disorders at Fielding Graduate University. Temi is a CAPPA Trained Postpartum Doula, a Certified New Parent Educator, U.S. Army Veteran, an Author, #boymom, and Wife. She enjoys traveling, blogging, and spending time with her family. 

In her words, “Participating in Emory University’s Urban Health Initiative maternal health projects presents opportunities for me to effectively address the maternal health crisis in Atlanta”.

Fun Fact: Temi has lived in three continents and toured 12 European nations by air, land, and sea.

Alyssa Roger

Program Volunteer

Alyssa is a DONA-trained doula and has a Bachelor’s degree in Public Health. She cares for the total wellbeing of pregnant individuals, ensuring that their needs beyond just the childbearing process are met.

Alyssa also incorporates strong advocacy skills in her role as a doula, helping pregnant individuals to experience care from providers that is respectful and evidence-based. She utilizes her knowledge regarding public health to assist in the operation of several volunteer doula programs, including UHI’s Atlanta Doula Connect.

Fun Fact: Alyssa has a twin sister! 

Tracie E. McCargo, EMBA, ALM

Program Volunteer

Tracie is a Clinical Research Coordinator at Emory SOM, with a dual role in business development. She has an Executive MBA, a master’s degree in Psychology and is matriculating towards a PhD in business psychology.  She has conducted research in the areas of healthcare administration, rehabilitation medicine and behavior change.

Tracie is driven to improve community outcomes, and affect public policy to improve education, health and wellness in underserved communities.

Fun fact: her hobbies include crafting and designing jewelry with metalsmithing and other mediums.

Steven Fair, Jr., MHA

Program Volunteer

Steven is a native of Atlanta, GA and is thrilled to be working with Emory University’s Urban Health Initiative. He has always had a passion for volunteer work and healthcare, especially tending to the needs of the underserved population.

Steven graduated from Georgia State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology with a Biology minor. He has obtained a Master of Healthcare Administration (MHA) degree, and is currently a medical student matriculating to obtain a Doctorate of Medicine (MD) degree.

It is Steven’s hope that the Atlanta Doula Connect project will serve as a beacon of light to address the rising maternal death rate of American women, and especially that of women of color.

Fun Fact: Steven is a huge sports fan, but his favorite sport is baseball!

Maya Viust

Program Volunteer

Maya Viust is a software analyst with BlackRock, Inc. She has a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Georgia Tech. She is passionate about using her skills to enact positive change. She is the creator of this website and the prototype of the Atlanta Doula Connect app.

Maya and her family have experienced medical bias. Therefore, she understands the need for people of color to have medical advocates.

Fun fact: Maya enjoys gardening, cooking, and white-water rafting.

Pearl Profile Pic

Pearl Gandotra

Program Volunteer

Pearl is a senior pursuing my psychology pre-med degree. She had a passion for helping people at a young age. She was involved with volunteer work- especially with underprivileged citizens within my community. She believes everyone deserves to have primary healthcare and the resources they need throughout their lives. 

Fun fact: She is a black belt in Taekwondo!

Yaneli Bibiano

Program Volunteer

Yaneli Bibiano is a Mexican native but has called Atlanta home for more than 20 years. She is currently a Research Technician at Georgia State University. She hopes her experiences will shed light on the importance of culturally relevant and inclusive medical care in the communities Emory’s Urban Health Initiative serves. 

Fun fact: In her free time, she likes to visit museums, coffee shops, and Atlanta United games.

Madison Li

Program Coordinator

Madison is one of the coordinators of the Emory Urban Health Initiative’s Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Mitigation Project. She is currently a junior at Emory College of Arts and Sciences majoring in Human Health and minoring in Sociology, passionate about researching health inequities and innovating health initiatives for marginalized communities. Madison has been working with the Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Mitigation projects and other UHI projects such as the Rolling Suitcase Drive since spring of 2022.

Madison is also involved in research on sexual and gender minority populations in Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health, the college volunteer program at Emory’s Winship Cancer Institute, the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Chair of Phi Delta Epsilon (Emory’s Pre-Med Fraternity), and is an orientation leader and student ambassador on campus.

Fun Fact: Madison ran the 2022 Publix Atlanta Half Marathon in February!

Phillips 5

Leah Phillips

Program Volunteer

Leah Phillips is a first-year medical student at Emory University. She graduated from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and a minor in Health Policy and Management in 2021.

Leah is passionate about working to address health inequities and further investigating how social determinants of health impact patient outcomes.

As an Atlanta native, Leah is excited to work with Atlanta Doula Connect to work to address maternal mortality and morbidity in the city.

Fun fact: Leah enjoys playing tennis and reading in her free time!

Avnee Sarnaik

Program Volunteer

Avnee is a junior at Georgia Tech majoring in Neuroscience with a minor in Psychology. She is passionate about alleviating healthcare inequities, especially in maternal and mental health. As a pre-med student she is involved in several organization dedicated to healthcare such as GT SHE for Women’s Health and has founded a chapter of Project LETS, a mental health organization. 

Avnee has experiences volunteering and working in underprivileged and diverse communities through her time as medical scribe at a covid clinic and as a clinical research assistant at CHOA. Her involvement in healthcare has allowed her to see firsthand disparities in healthcare, so she hopes to promote inclusive medical care through Atlanta Doula Connect. 

Fun fact: Avnee enjoys reading, trying new foods, and traveling!

Agnes Arianto

Program Volunteer

Agnes is a rising senior at Emory double majoring in Human Health and Economics, with an interest in global maternal health. Motivated by her experiences in her home country of Indonesia, she is excited to volunteer with Atlanta Doula Connect to address maternal healthcare disparities in Atlanta, since “global is local.”

Outside of ADC, Agnes is also involved in Uplifting Marginalized Mothers and Individuals, volunteers with UHI’s Healthy Pregnancy Spacing project, and conducts research with the Emory-Ethiopia Partnership. She is also involved in a multitude of international student efforts on campus.

Fun fact: In her free time, she is probably trying new Tiktok recipes.