Graduation Year

2012

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.A.

Degree Granting Department

Anthropology

Major Professor

Roberta Baer

Keywords

Chin, Karen, Kayah, Migrant Health, Public Health, Resettlement

Abstract

Burmese refugees are entering the US at record speed. Resettlement agencies focus on immediate needs, and ethnic community-based organizations (ECBOs) fill any service gaps through community-driven programs. The Tampa Bay Burmese Council (TBBC) is an ECBO in Tampa, FL dedicated to the Burmese community. This research explores the reproductive beliefs of the women in the community, paying particular attention to any differences that arise due to beliefs specific to their ethnic group. Findings include the importance of menses for women's health, the preference for both male and female children, a lack of knowledge about family planning methods, a tendency to use family planning only after the ideal family composition is reached, and periods of food and activity prohibitions during pregnancy and the postpartum period. The recommendations offered will be used by the TBBC to apply for grants to fund needed community-based services.

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