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#startupmom: Taraneh Shirazian

August 10, 2015

In addition to being a full time ob/gyn, you run a non-profit organization we are quite fond of (pro tip: it's Babies4Babies' official NGO partner). Can you tell us more about how you got started, your mission and how we can help support it? 

Saving Mothers is a 501c3 organization with a primary mission to prevent pregnancy and childbirth related deaths. Around the globe, pregnancy can be a death sentence for many women. It’s my goal as an ob/gyn and a mother to advocate for these young women who don’t have access to basic care or skilled health providers. 

Saving Mothers was a dream of my colleague and mine in 2009. It is an organization of medical professionals dedicated to improving the lives of women globally. We are a volunteer organization, over 95% of all donations go directly to our programs and no dime is wasted.

We have a fundraising campaign right now on Indiegogo. Please support our work to save the lives of mothers!

What does a typical day look like in your world?

Wow tough one! No two days are alike. I wake up everyday and think about what I’m going to accomplish. That means thinking about my kid’s schedules and what they need, seeing women in the office in NYC and thinking about how to most effectively help them, operating on a variety of women’s gyn issues, talking to my Saving Mothers staff and interns about new projects to raise money and awareness, writing papers, teaching, figuring out dinner, seeing my wonderful husband, entertaining my children and hopefully at some point sleeping.

Speaking of your kiddos. Can you tell us a bit more about them?

I feel so lucky to have two healthy, beautiful and exceptional children. As an ob/gyn, I have seen first-hand the complications of pregnancy and simply feel lucky. I have a 5-year-old son and a 2-year-old daughter. He is very ordered and structured and she throws caution to the wind!

What’s your mom style?

Hands-on, involved, supportive

What is the best advice you ever received from another mom?

Not to sweat the small stuff, there will be many more important battles.

What was a time you felt like you were doing this mom thing really well?

My son tells everyone (who will listen) that his mom helps people get better, and he’s very proud of me.

What do you love most about being a #startupmom?

I love the creativity that comes with developing programs yourself, and the pride at seeing your accomplishments flourish.

Your family in three words

Non-stop energy!

What inspires you and your work?

I am inspired in the office when I see and treat women, and I'm also inspired everyday to give back globally as much as possible. I feel it’s my responsibility as an ob/gyn trained at the best institutions in the best country in the world to raise awareness and create effective medical programs for those less fortunate. After all, we could all be that woman in Kenya or Guatemala who is scared and doesn’t have the trained people or supplies to allow her a safe birth.

Support a safe birth by supporting Saving Mothers! 

When and where do you get most of your work done?

Probably during the day in between scheduled activities. I have learned to focus quickly these days and even 20 minutes is a long time for me to get things done! After my kids sleep, I’m too exhausted to do anything else, they wipe me out!

What’s hard about being a #startupmom?

It’s a huge investment of time and energy sometimes for little obvious results.

Did you take time off or scale back when you had your babies?

In the medical field, especially as a surgeon, it’s difficult to take a lot of time off. I feel lucky to have had easy pregnancies, but I only had six weeks off for each. I live and work in very close proximity, that has made all the difference.

Your favorite place in the world is...

This is a very difficult question, as I feel fortunate to have been in so many exceptional places - but I would have to say New Zealand. I think it’s the most peaceful place on the planet.

What are you most proud of this year? 

Saving Mothers has grown tremendously in the last year, and we have many accomplishments to be proud of. We have eight NYC marathon runners supporting us this year, and a huge new prenatal program in Kenya just approved by the Kenyan government! We also have involved many medical volunteers from across the country in giving back to women globally!

Saving Mothers doctors in the field

Please help us reach our Indigogo goal! 

Any parting advice for all of our moms, entrepreneurs and #startupmoms out there? 

Do not put too much stress on yourself, both motherhood and being involved in entrepreneurship are long term investments. You’re in for the long-haul.

If you haven't already, you must link up with Dr. Shirazian and Saving Mothers on Facebook and Twitter. And make sure you check out their Instagram for pictures of their work in Kenya and Guatamala and after you stop by the Indigogo page, visit their blog and website to support the health of mothers. 

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