Parents Centre members receive Kiwi Parent magazine and our newsletter every 2 months as well as a membership card that entitles you to discounts off Parents Centre courses.
Tell us a little bit about you…
I moved to Waiuku 3 years ago after being a West Aucklander all my life up to that point. I have been a childbirth educator for 6 years and have a real excitement and passion for anything pregnancy, birth or parenting related. My husband Daniel is a software engineer and volunteers for Parents Centre too and I have three children, Zac 15, Ryan 9 and Poppy 4.
What is a Childbirth Educator?
A Childbirth Educator is a qualified person who facilitates antenatal courses but may also facilitate some early postnatal or parenting courses too.
What does an Antenatal Course involve?
My antenatal courses are designed to be fun, positive and informative and for both parents to get involved and meet likeminded couples. The course has a variety of topics to explore around maternity care, labour and birth, life with a newborn and life as parents. Having a baby is a journey and it is all about being informed along the way.
Becoming parents is a transition and we will look at some information, tips and ideas to assist with this which can make life a lot easier.
One really important thing that attending a antenatal course helps with is providing the parents with a support group once the baby is born. No-one will know better the experiences that you are going through, more-so than someone else who is experiencing it along with you, with their baby.
What is a Post Natal Course and what does it involve?
Our Baby & You course can offer reassurance, ideas, information, guidance and further connections to support people.
During the first session, we usually discuss the journey so far and how each person is feeling about that. This course is attended by new mums and so there are a lot of emotions which rise to the top during this session. This can be very useful for everyone as they see how much common ground they share.
Other topics covered by invited speakers are infant feeding; infant sleeping; first aid; infant massage and brain development.
Why did you become a CBE?
When I had my first son Zac I went to antenatal classes with his Dad. To be honest I didn’t enjoy them and left feeling nervous and overwhelmed. We separated when he was 4 and I was very lucky to meet my wonderful husband and we decided to grow our family. When pregnant with our son we decided to attend classes to build a support network and to get more informed.
I was truly worried about having to go to the same sort of classes and began researching other providers. Luckily I came across West Auckland Parents Centre classes and was really grateful for the wonderful knowledge I gained, the people I met and the learning atmosphere that I found there.
In comparison those 7 weeks made me feel so secure in my decisions about how I wanted to birth my baby, it helped me gain knowledge about ideas I had not even known about years before and it really helped me to see I had a passion for pregnancy and birth.
I began my training soon after Ryan’s birth to be a childbirth educator.
How long have you been a CBE?
About 6 years and I have been lucky to meet over 950 couples as they embark on their own parenting journey.
What training and qualifications have you completed?
Study is offered through distance learning. There were lots of assignments and ‘packages’ to be completed. I also observed a variety of other Childbirth Educators in their antenatal courses.
As part of my study I attended a five day workshop in Wellington and a 3 day course in Auckland.
After my first two classes and lots of reflection and learning I was fortunate to receive my Diploma.
What is the best part about being a CBE?
Gosh there is isn’t just one! As a CBE I think my favourite part is watching parents grow in confidence and move from a place of uncertainty and even sometimes fear to excitement and wonder and being part of their journey to becoming a family.
What is your favourite piece of advice to first time mothers?
You are the expert on your baby and no one else can replace your parenting instincts or know what your family needs or wants as well as you.
Enjoy each day because even on the challenging ones there will be moments that will take your breath away and make you glad to be a parent.
What are your contact details?