She Means Business: MITERA founder Yoko Shimada’s Mission to Empower Modern Moms
Yoko Shimada hasn’t always been designing dresses. A former Global Public Health expert, and an alumna of the World Bank and Clinton Foundation, Yoko is the founder of a New York City-based maternity and nursing wear brand, called MITERA. Yoko has over 15 years of experience in implementing health programs worldwide focused on Public-Private Partnerships, health systems and financing, and program monitoring and evaluation working with a wide variety of governments, private sector enterprises, NGOs, and major donors and foundations.
During her extensive career she became especially passionate about maternal and child health. Having become a mother herself a little over 4 years ago, Yoko became a strong advocate for breastfeeding. She found that breastfeeding and pumping could be physically and emotionally challenging for women. Being both a busy professional and a new mother very much in need of high quality maternity wear for the workplace, Yoko decided to launch MITERA, a collection blending beautiful (and machine washable!) high end garments that would meet the needs of the workplace and the demands of breastfeeding.
“While mothers are told ‘breast is best,’ and they are encouraged to do their ‘best’ by breastfeeding their babies, there is little acceptance or support for public breastfeeding and pumping at workplaces after mothers return to work”, says Yoko. There is a swirling pot of issues surrounding motherhood and each is complex. Yoko believes women, regardless of their personal choices as mothers, need to be supported- period. There is a huge gap between the societal expectations of mothers to do it all, and the systems and resources available to support them as they embark on their journey into motherhood.
Maternity and postpartum wardrobe is one of those factors that can either hinder or bolster a woman’s ability to successfully and confidently transition into motherhood. What you wear influences how you feel. Yoko’s philosophy behind MITERA is a simple yet important: to empower women through their wardrobe during pregnancy, nursing, transitioning back-to-work and beyond. In addition to their functionality and practicality for all occasions, the collection is designed and sustainably crafted in New York City!
For every dress purchased, MITERA donates to partner organizations such as D-Rev’s Newborn Health Program dedicated to enacting positive change in maternal and newborn health by ensuring that everyone has access to world-class medical technologies. Yoko explains that “as we become mothers, our capacity for love grows, as does our commitment to improving maternal and newborn health”. When you shop MITERA you are investing in yourself and in making the world a better place for all mothers and their babies. MITERA Collection and support moms everywhere! Yoko’s working to change the world one dress at a time.
To learn more and join a the conversation on motherhood and the workplace be sure to check out this special event presented by MITERA.
Business, Babies, Breastfeeding
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breastfeeding, children, confidence, fashion, mama glow, maternity, motherhood, new mom, nursing, parenting, public health, reproductive health, self care, self magazine, style, working moms, yoko shimada |