For most Americans, Labor Day marks the unofficial end of summer. It means backyard barbecues and basking in the final days of summer sun, one last hurrah before the leaves start to fall and the school year gets into full swing.

Typically, we don't associate Labor Day with childbirth. But for an organization known as BOLD, Labor Day provides the perfect opportunity to talk about birth, and to draw attention to the changes in maternity care that are desperately needed in order to protect laboring women throughout the world.

Celebrate Labor Day By Celebrating Childbirth?

BOLD (which stands for Birth on Labor Day — get the play on words?) is described as "a global movement to make maternity care mother-friendly." The movement began in 2005 with the first performance of a play called Birth, and has grown rapidly in the past six years.

According to the BOLD website, Birth playwright Karen Brody quickly realized the impact her play could have on both individual women and on maternity care in general.

"[T]he play was more than a piece of art; it was an opportunity to engage communities in a movement to make maternity care mother-friendly, to end wrongful acts against mothers in the labor and delivery rooms and encourage mothers to take back their power and know their birth options."

How to Celebrate With BOLD

Today, Birth is performed every September in cities throughout the world as a part of the larger BOLD movement. Several cities also host BOLD Red Tent birth storytelling circles, which are designed to raise both money and awareness about the need for improved maternity care for women.

If you are interested in learning more about childbirth, BOLD is a great resource. Look to see if there are any Red Tent events or productions of Birth in your community this Labor Day, or register to watch a free webcast of Birth in the comfort of your own home at 7 p.m. EST on Monday, September 5.

Keep in mind that the play will also be broadcast online several times on both September 17 and 24, so no need to worry — you can still make it to those can't-miss Labor Day barbeques.

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