Positive Birth in South Africa: This is Lynda Silk


The Gate-Keepers: A Portraiture Project

This is a portraiture project, documenting the “gatekeepers” of a growing movement regarding positive birth experiences in our country.  My aim: to promote those who are enabling women to identify with their power and femininity and therefore normalize birth and the body.

These are their stories / anecdotes / opinions about what they do and how they see it…accompanied by my portraits and some general information on each sitter.

Lynda is a complimentary health practitioner who is currently undergoing doula certification. She’s worked in fine arts, theatre, television, design and advertising.
Now she utilises Jin Shin Jyutsu and family constellation therapy as her primary tools in working hands ion with her patients. She works mostly between Rondebosch and Simons Town areas and has been in her industry since 2004. She began her doula certification in 2014.

Lynda Silk Doula Midwife south africa photographed by Leah Hawker

“The first time I attended a birth in South Africa I gave a stranger a lift to a hospital when she was in labour. I stayed with her because of the level of abuse and lack of real care all around her. She was terrified. What I saw during the 36 hours I was with her in the labour wards brought me to understand that we are a whole society in trauma: how can there be any chance of resolving symptoms of violence, abuse, disrespect, dominance, betrayal and brutality when these experiences are present in the most vulnerable beginnings of life”

“That wondrous intelligence that from two cells creates a whole new human being – no thinking involved at all, just an inherent intelligence at work without thought. That intelligence never deserts us, it is in every cell of our bodies, if only we could explore and trust that more.”

• (I invite more participants to join the project, you are welcome to email me for more information).

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