Journalists launch free text service for black mothers

City Bureau debuted the Cord during Black Maternal Health Week

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By Michael Romain


A free text message service for black mothers in Chicago debuted on April 15, in the middle of Black Maternal Health Week, which is from April 11 through April 17. 

The service, called the Cord, was launched by City Bureau, the South Side-based nonprofit civic journalism lab. 

"The Cord ( is a free resource via SMS text for pregnant women, mothers and anyone looking for resources on pregnancy and motherhood in Chicago," City Bureau explained in a statement released Monday. 

"Anybody can subscribe and ask City Bureau reporters about maternal health and share story tips and ideas," the statement reads. "Subscribers will receive articles, links to resources and other information that help with pregnancy and motherhood straight to their phones."

According to the statement, City Bureau reporters have interviewed West Side women "who know about the stark disparities in maternal health but aren't totally sure where to get information on local options geared toward women of color." 

Subscribers to the free service will get baby news, tips on what to do after giving birth, resources on healthy pregnancies, and other information sent to their phones. Subscribers will also be able to communicate directly with City Bureau reporters about a variety of topics. 

City Bureau launches the text message service just as its recurring Reporting Fellowship is gearing up for its spring cycle. A team of City Bureau fellows will be doing a deep dive into maternal and infant health on the West Side. 

If you're a black mother who is interested in giving your input to a City Bureau reporter, contact Sarah Conway, a City Bureau civic reporting resident, at (312) 882-5814 or


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