Current Leader

Jennifer Jacklin Stratton

Jennifer Jacklin Stratton
Location: Paramus, New Jersey Cohort Start Year: 2020 Project Topics: Arts in Health and Healing, Communications, Community/Civic Engagement, Education, Health Care Access, Maternal and Infant Health, Violence and Trauma Populations Served: At-Risk/Vulnerable Populations, Children and Families, Foster Youth and Families, Women's Health
Creative Facilitator

Weaving practices from the creative arts, placemaking, ecology, health, and trauma-informed care, Jennifer facilitates workshops at Zoe’s Place—a residence program designed to provide access to safe housing and support services for young mothers and their children. Since 2016, the collaboration has grown from a small handful of women sharing their stories to an active community-led support network sharing an understanding that healthy communities and ecosystems start with healthy mothers.

STRATEGIC INITIATIVE: Collective Mothering
The United States is the only industrialized nation with a rising infant mortality rate. Tremendous inequities exist in reproductive rights, quality, and access to healthcare, especially for low-income women and women of color. Despite the benefits of ‘collective’ or ‘community’ mothering, women across the U.S. have been challenged by racialized and patriarchal, dominating cultural norms and media narratives that tend to emphasize individualized and biological mothering. My strategic initiative seeks to create and share more inclusive, intergenerational, and nuanced representations of motherhood experiences and provide resources for building community and collective care practices. This includes publishing a collection of photographs, experiences, reflections, and creative strategies from the past several years of facilitating collaborative visual storytelling workshops at Zoe’s Place, a residence program providing safe housing and support services to young mothers and their children. Production of this toolkit will also serve as a case study for future projects, as an essential part of the proposed initiative will be developing long-term sustainability and collaborations to serve more community groups and grow and sustain this restorative storytelling work in the long term.

At the heart of her work is exploring public research, art, and storytelling as accessible tools for reimagining possibilities while deepening personal/collective understanding, relationships, and civic engagement.

Learning from a growing constellation and lineage of practitioners and teachers, including her mother, Jennifer is also a full-spectrum doula care provider.