Saturday, July 16, 2011

MC QLD Branch Meeting

All welcome to attend MC’s next meeting

Come along and learn more about Maternity Coalition.

Be updated on current campaigns and listen to the many ways you can help shape maternity services in Australia.

Wednesday 3rd August

10:00 – 12:30

218 Gladstone Road, Dutton Park (opp Pope St)

Please bring something to share for morning tea.

Children very welcome



Phone Ali 3844 3048 by 1st August

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

MC QLD Branch Meeting

QLD Branch Meeting

All welcome to come along and learn more about Maternity Coalition.

Listen to the many ways you can help shape maternity services in Australia.

Wednesday June 15th

10:30 – 12:30


14 Station Street, Nundah

Children welcome. There is a lovely playground for them to enjoy

Please bring something to share for morning tea.

RSVP by 16 June

Nundah Community Centre

Volunteers needed for MC Stall at PBC Expo 24 - 26 June

MC QLD is once again having a stall at the Pregnancy, Babies and Children Expo at the
Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre, South Bank on 24-26 June and we'd really appreciate some help.

If you can spare a few hours on either day we'd love to hear from you. Please email with your name, contact details and availability as soon as you can.

This is a great opportunity to share information about Pregnancy, Birth and Postnatal Options.

Tickets are free and can be downloaded from

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Mums celebrate caring midwives

IT was the International Day of the Midwife recently, and Goondiwindi mothers were quick to sing the praises of the Goondiwindi Midwifery Group.

The practice, in its third year of operation, has proved to be a success story. So much so that similar groups will be developed throughout the Darling Downs.

The Goondiwindi Midwifery Group Practice was the first of its kind on the Downs and offers a continuity of care model of service.

This model ensures women receive their pregnancy, birth and post-natal care from a known midwife.

And now that the government has committed to providing Australian women with medicare rebates for private midwifery care, more birth choices are accessible and available.

Former Goondiwindi resident, Alecia Sutton had her first baby using the Goondiwindi model.

“It is great to have a one on one relationship with your midwife, you know that she is just a phone call away and you develop the confidence to have the birth you want.

“The benefits of such services include a feeling of empowerment from the confidence developed with a one to one relationship, a heightened knowledge of mothers on pregnancy and birth, and less medical intervention during birth. “These combining factors contribute to a better start for mothers and their babies,” she said.

An upcoming community meeting with Maternity Coalition Queensland and The Australian College of Midwives Queensland will inform local women of the birthing choices available.

If you would like more information about this meeting please phone Ildiko Keogh on 0419 756 240, Alecia Sutton 0401033348 or Meghan Keleher on 0439 184 837.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Consumer Representation Survey and Training

Hi Everyone
As you might already be aware, the Queensland Centre for Mothers and Babies is working in partnership with MC Qld and Health Consumers Queensland to develop and evaluate a pilot consumer rep training program. For those in Queensland, QCMB's april newsletter is attached here with information about how to get involved in the project. We are particularly excited by the project because, uniquely, it is being developed by consumers, for consumers. (Jo Smethurst, Ali Gaffney and I are working on it, with QCMB.)

One of the things the project needs now is advice for experienced maternity consumer representatives (from all over, now just those in Qld) about the training needs of beginning consumer reps. To this end, we have created a brief survey at If you are an experienced consumer rep, we would be really grateful if you would take a few minutes to complete the survey. The first workshop is due to be delivered on June 30, so we really need your input ASAP, but certainly no later than June 1.

It would also be great if you could forward this request throughout your networks so that we can get feedback from as many experienced consumer reps as possible.

We will keep you posted about the progress of the project!

Bec Jenkinson
Maternity Coalition
Queensland Branch President
(h) 07 3351 4834
(m) 0439 765 633

Maternity Consumer Representative Training Program


The Queensland Centre for Mothers and Babies has partnered with Health Consumers QLD and Maternity Coalition to develop, implement and evaluate a pilot training program specifically for consumer representatives of maternity services.

This pilot training program aims to support consumers to be actively involved in policy, service planning and evaluation decision-making about maternity services in Queensland. The pilot will target areas with maternity facilities planning significant maternity model of care changes.

If you’ve ever been pregnant and have an interest in improving your local pregnancy, birth and post-natal care options then you can be a part of this training program. It’s not essential, but you might also identify with one of the following characteristics:
• are currently active in a maternity consumer organisation
• have an interest in policy, planning, service delivery and evaluation of maternity services
• live in an area where your local maternity facility is planning significant changes to the way in which women receive care (model of care changes) and are interested in maternity issues – or you may want your local facility to plan some significant changes!

Training participants will not need any specific skills or qualifications. Efforts are being made to ensure a broad demographic of consumers will participate in the training.

The first training workshop is planned to take place in Brisbane on Thursday, June 30, 2011 with another workshop planned for early 2012. We’ll give participants the assistance they need to attend the workshop. Workshop participants will receive on-going support through:
• on-line resources
• networking with other consumer representatives across the state
• mentored by consumer consultants and/or other experienced consumer representatives.

How you can help
We would also like you all to spread the word about this project in the following ways:

For consumers:
Let fellow consumers and consumer groups know that they can access this training.
Register your interest in participating in this training. Call 07 3346 3069 or email

If you’re an experienced consumer representative and would like to support and mentor another person, please call or email us on the contact details above.

For maternity workers:
Keep an eye out for consumers who might be interested in consumer representation and this training program.

Contact Health Consumers QLD for advice and support to facilitate a positive relationship with your consumer representatives. Ph: 1800 613 251 or 32340611

For more information contact:
Queensland Centre for Mothers and Babies
Ali Gaffney, Bec Jenkinson or Joanne Smethurst
Ph: 07 3346 3069

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Trivia Night Fundraiser for Cambodia

Vicki Chan, midwife extraordinaire has recently been in Cambodia helping set up a new birth centre for local families through LifeOptions.

LifeOptions is a Health Education organisation that established in Australia, and works in Thailand, India, Nepal and Cambodia. In recent years, the not-for-profit organisation has moved into selected areas in Cambodia to improve healthcare. Now, birth and health centres have been opened, and LifeOptions is helping to create and improve schools, toilets, gardens, roads, etc., to improve and save lives in these communities, that face every day battles with poverty, hunger, diarrhoea, respiratory problems, and women’s health issues, including many mothers dying during childbirth and abortion.

In an effort to support LifeOptions and the community they help, this fun night will raise much-needed funds. The aim is $2000 for a life-saving tuk-tuk ambulance... any money raised above that amount will go into other projects in the community.

Time:Saturday, May 7 · 6:30pm - 11:00pm

Location: Upstairs function room @ Maroochy RSL Memorial Avenue
Maroochydore, Australia

Trivia will be run by Trivia Time (with prizes on offer), the bar will be open, and a selection of great prizes will be on offer, including (so far):

-vouchers from local businesses
-photography packs
-framed art
-massage vouchers
-beauty services vouchers
-chiropractic vouchers
-Instrumental accessories
-signed AFL (Lions) and NRL (Cowboys) jerseys.


1. Transfer funds (tickets are $35 p/head) to
Alison Chan
Commonwealth Bank
BSB 064121
ACC 1000 8207
Please put your full name as your transaction description.

2. Send an email to outlining how many tickets you would like, the amount you have transfered, and a postal address you would like them sent to.

Please spread the word - all are welcome. Tickets will be $35 p/head and seating is limited so tickets must be pre-booked. ALL FUNDS RAISED will go to supporting LifeOptions Cambodia.

Trivia night facebook page:!/event.php?eid=111837502232364

For more information on LifeOptions, check out: <>
or add their Facebook page:!/pages/LifeOptions-Direct-Empowerment-Cambodia-Nepal/105539079473682?sk=info <>
or read Vicki's blog: <>

Thursday, April 21, 2011

International Day of the Midwife 5km celebratory walk.

Hi Everyone

What are you doing to celebrate International Day of the Midwife? If you are in Brisbane and up for an early start, it would be great to see you at this special event! See info below.

Australian College of Midwives Queensland Branch is delighted to invite you all to attend our International Day of the Midwife 5km celebratory walk.

Midwives and their supporters around the world are walking to raise awareness of global inequalities in maternal and newborn health.

On 5th May 2011 the Australian College of Midwives Queensland Branch (ACMQ) will lead midwives and mothers in a 5 km walk from Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital (RBWH) to Mater Mothers Hospital to mark International Day of the Midwife 2011. Over 340,000 women die each year, with millions more suffering infection and disability, as a result of preventable maternal causes. The International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) is committed to reducing inequality, through greater access to essential midwifery care worldwide, particularly in developing countries where 90% of maternal deaths occur.

Here in Australia Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women are almost three times more likely to die while pregnant, during labour and up to six weeks after giving birth than non-indigenous women. We want to see all Indigenous mothers and babies accessing safe maternity care through increased Government commitment to culturally appropriate maternity services. To this end the ACM has established the Rodanthe Lipsett Scholarship fund to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander women to study to become midwives. Entrance is free but any funds raised at the walk in Brisbane will be donated to this fund.

The walk on the 5th of May is the start of a journey that finishes at the ICM Congress in Durban in June 2011, a global gathering where 3000 midwives will share evidence of what works to reduce maternal mortality and improve the care and support available to mothers and newborns around the world.
Please see attached flyer and press release about this event.

How you can become involved:

• Join us for the walk: invite your family and friends and the women and families you have cared for!

• Print the flyer and display prominently in your workplace -
Click here for FLYER

• Send the Press Release to any News, Radio, Newspaper or other media contacts you may have.
Click here for Press Release

• Please RSVP Jane Menke with 'IDM walk RSVP' in the subject line

• See updates for the event on facebook: 'International day of the Midwife 5km walk'

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


As part of a project to implement the recommendations of the Birthing
Services Review, the Gold Coast Hospital is holding a Workshop. The
purpose of this workshop is to guarantee a space and time for the
voices not yet heard to contribute to this process. Please expect to
participate in small and large group conversations with this shared

WHEN: FRIDAY 6th May 2011
TIME: 1-5 pm
The Functions Centre
Cnr of Musgrave & Olsen Ave

  • Facilitated by Scott Arbuthnot
  • Small & large group conversations about:
  • Continuity of care models around Australia & options for the GCH
  • Current research: Midwives @New Group Practice Options (M@NGO, RCT)
  • Logan Hospital Midwifery Group Practice for vulnerable women- the
  • experiences of the women & midwives
  • Models of care and partnerships with Doctors
  • Midwives working in the Birth Centre, sharing their experiences as MGP
  • midwives
  • Women & families share their stories & experiences of Birthing Services at
  • GCH
  • Young Parents voices- ‘What are their choices?’ – Presented by YHES House
Participation from consumers, GP’s,
Staff, midwifery and medical is essential to
this process.
This is an exciting opportunity to participate
in the redesign, of your Birthing Service & the
journey to the new Gold Coast University

To help with numbers for afternoon tea,
please RSVP by the 4th May, if you are coming to:

Anne Moore, Midwifery Practice Project
Manager, via e-mail:
or text: 0401 049 715

Help with children will be available

If you are a Gold Coast local or have an interest in Gold Coast birthing options, please consider attending. Deirdrie Cullen has been our consumer rep on the project and would happily answer any inquiries you might have about the workshop. Her email address is

Could you also please let Bec Jenkinson know if you are planning on attending so that she can ensure MC is represented by a number of reps: or (h) 07 3351 4834 (m) 0439 765 633. Thank you.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

birth choices television commercial

Midwives Australia and Maternity Coalition are applying to SBS TV for some sponsored airtime for television commercial raising awareness of birth choices, as part of the SBS Foundation's support program for community and not-for-profit groups. To be successful, we need your help

We need to provide a 30-second TV-ready commercial. Nic Edmonstone, noted Brisbane film maker specialising in birth films, has offered her creative support to the project but we urgently need digital images and footage related to birth, pregnancy care or early motherhood. Please circulate this request far and wide via all your networks, and lets see how many beautiful images we can collect

Given SBS's focus on cultural diversity, we are particularly keen to include some images/footage which show culturally diverse birth practices/traditions. So please make an extra special effort to extend this request to those who might be able to share such images in particular

Before sending us any images or footage, please ensure that you have permission of all people depicted in the footage/images to share them, and for them to be potentially included in a TV commercial. Midwives Australia and Maternity Coalition will not use the images for any other purpose and we hope that the involvement of Nic Edmonstone in the project will also give people confidence that their images will be treated with the utmost respect.

Please send digital footage/images to as an attachment.
In the text of the email please include your name, address, email address and telephone contact details. Please also include the following statement: "I give Midwives Australia and Maternity Coalition permission to use my attached footage/images for a TV commercial raising awareness of birth choices. I have permission to share this footage/images from all people depicted. I acknowledge that my footage/images may not be used in the final TV commercial and that the TV commercial is part of a proposal to SBS television that may be unsuccessful. I understand that my footage/images will not be used for any other purpose."

Thank you for your help – we will contact everyone that submits images/footages to let you know the outcome of our proposal.

Kind regards,

Sarah Kerr
National President

08 8369 2101 or 0417 381 598

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Homebirth Shindig!

Homebirthers! Midwives! Homebirth supporters! Friends & Families!

Please come celebrate the past, present and future of our home birth community!

Saturday March 12, 2011, 5pm – 10pm

Helensvale Community Centre (South Hall)

31 Discovery Dr., Helensvale QLD

(only a few minutes off the M1)


5pm – 6pm: Happy Hour and Raw Chocolate Smoothies!

5.30pm – 6.30pm: Singer/Songwriter Maryen Cairns on “Rock Maid to Mummy & More”

6.30pm: Dinner vegan, dairy free & gluten free food by ANA’s Catering, plus a couple of roast’s and a variety of homemade deserts

7.30pm Guest Speaker Dr Sarah Buckley Author of “Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering”, well known GP & Homebirth mum!

8pm – 10pm Lilobao & The Serpentine Dancers African Drumming & Dancers!

Interspersed with mother & son duo

Josie & Ethan Kernaghan

Face painting for the kids/ HMA stall/ Home-grown Arts & Crafts stalls/ Fabulous Raffle!!!


$20 p/p or $50 per family (+ $15 for extra tribe members) includes dinner and soft drink tickets for each person

Children under 5 are free

Prepaid tickets are preferred: on sale at support groups or by direct deposit: email for details

The facebook event link is:

Please email numbers of adults and children coming to the event so we can make sure we get catering numbers right!

“It's been about 5 years since we've celebrated as a community. Let's reconnect with old friends and meet new ones on March 12. Be inspired and revitalize your homebirth spirit when you listen to our guest speaker, the awesome Dr. Sarah Buckley! Enhance the community by sharing information; build new relationships; dance to the rhythms of home grown beats or watch the tribal dancing of Lilobao and the Serpentine Dancers. A scrumptious dinner, music, and dancing - what better way to bring a community together?!” Hollie Singleton, HMA Convenor

Please note all funds go to the Home Midwifery Association in support of homebirth choices and keeping your local support groups active.

This event is also listed on Facebook! Please "Like" our page at!/pages/Home-Midwifery-Association-QLD-Inc/157800367603126 and share this event with your friends!

Feel Free to forward to all like minded people!!!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

MC Qld Branch annual Orientation & Planning Workshop

On Sunday Feb 27, MC Qld Branch is holding our annual Orientation & Planning Workshop (agenda to follow shortly). Please circulate this information throughout your networks - especially in regional Queensland.

Last year, we saw a number of key milestones in the reform marathon - Medicare for Midwives is now a reality and the Queensland government has committed to expanding women's access to continuity of carer models by 2013. We also have involvement in a long awaited Consumer Representative Training project, under the auspices of Qld Centre for Mothers and Babies.

In 2011, our work will be focused on bedding down those milestones and ensuring that women remain central to their implementation. As the work begins in hospitals across Qld to create or expand continuity of carer models (in order to meet the government target by 2013), we will need an unprecedented number of consumer representatives making their voices heard. As Midwives take up the opportunities afforded by access to Medicare, we need to continue our work resolving the challenges of collaborative arrangements and also raise awareness in the community about this new care option. And of course, for MC to continue to be a vibrant and relevant consumer voice in birth reform, we need to have a special focus on membership and recruitment.

If you're already an active member of MC, if you have ideas or special interest in any of the above focus areas for 2011, or if you have a strategy that you’d like to propose, then you’ll want to be there to help shape our direction for 2011.

If you’re a relative new comer to the world of birth reform activism, this day is a great way to learn more and get involved. Whatever your interests, however much (or little) time you have, there is some way that you can help MC. Maybe you’d like to host a movie night or tell your birth story at an event? Maybe your curiosity has been piqued by the notion of consumer representation? Perhaps you are willing to open your home as a venue for branch meetings. Maybe you prefer work behind the scenes, caring for children, cooking a meal or driving other members to meetings – these are critical contributions that allow MC members to do the work that we do. Every effort makes a difference – enables us to keep driving forward in the campaign for “Every woman, Every choice”.

Please come along! Come to find out more. Come to meet other like-minded people. Come to dip your toe (or your whole leg) into the waters of birth reform.

Who: You (babes-in-arms welcome)

Where: 177 Frasers Rd, Mitchelton

When: 9am to 3pm, 27 Feb 2010

What to bring: A delicious dish for a shared lunch; Gold coin donation for morning tea; Your ideas, energy & enthusiasm.

RSVP: by email or phone to Ildiko Keogh by February 18.

07 32890184

Consumers in regional Queensland who may need sponsorship for travel to attend are encouraged to contact Ildiko to discuss.

Looking forward to seeing you!

Bec Jenkinson
Maternity Coalition
Queensland Branch President

Friday, January 21, 2011

Would you like extra support in pregancy and for your birth

Are you pregnant? Know someone who is pregnant? There are midwifery students all over Queensland who need to do 'follow-throughs' as part of their course requirements.

'Follow-throughs' are designed to allow students to build relationships with woman and her family that is consistent and continuous. These relationships are an invaluable way for midwifery students to learn about providing support when and where it is needed most.

With your permission midwifery students will attend your antenatal appointments, contribute to your care during labour and birth and visit you within the first few weeks after your baby is born. Students will be involved as much or as little as you like and you can withdraw at any time if you find it doesn't work for you. Best of all it doesn't cost anything!

Why not get in touch with your local university or hospital if you’d like this kind of support.

Medicare for Midwives

Understand how Medicare will work for private practice midwives in a range of settings from
midwives who have worked in private practice.

January 29 8.30am – 4.30pm
Griffith University Nathan Campus, Brisbane

You will be provided with information about applying for Medicare eligibility, becoming a
Medicare provider, collaborative arrangements, establishing a business and sustaining your
private practice through change.

Liz Wilkes – Liz is a private practice midwife who has represented the Australian Private Midwives Association on the national Maternity Service Advisory Group and NHMRC Collaborative Guidance group. Liz has an intricate knowledge of the legislation and funding arrangements of the new reforms. Since the introduction of Medicare in November Liz has
become one of the first midwives in Australia to have a Medicare provider number and has established a private midwifery group practice in Toowoomba called My Midwives.

Due to the postponement of this workshop in Maleny due to flooding we are now conducting the workshop at Griffith University Nathan Campus on Saturday 29 January.

Registrations will be accepted until January 27.
The workshop will cost $125 and will include morning tea and afternoon tea.

A Business Resource folder and e-records will be available on the day.

This extremely interactive workshop is designed to allow you to put your application for eligibility together within the workshop and to facilitate you having assistance to do so.

To register:
email Midwives Australia at
or phone 0427323621

Friday, January 14, 2011

Queensland Floods

On behalf of Maternity Coalition Qld Committee,

With such tragic loss of life and destruction resulting from the floods across the state, know that our thoughts are with all of our members and their friends, families and midwives in flood affected areas.

For the families who have welcomed wee babes during these tumultuous days, we hope that their births mark a beacon of hope and a beginning of rebuilding in the most life-affirming way.

Stay safe.

Bec Jenkinson

Maternity Coalition Queensland Branch President

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Birth into Being film/talk night with Elena Tonetti-Vladimirova and Dr Sarah Buckley

MC QLD are excited to have Elena Tonetti-Vladimirova, the maker of the film "Birth into Being" come to Brisbane in January 2011. She was involved in the early days of the water birth movement in Russia that has forever changed birth across the globe.

A film/talk night is being held with Elena and Dr Sarah Buckley.
Thursday 27 January 2011
6.30pm to 8.30pm
Chermside Library, meeting room 1
375 Hamilton Road
Chermside (plenty of free parking around the library, pool and Kedron Wavell Services Club)

Check out this website for info about the film, Elena and the workshop she'll be running in Brisbane that weekend.

She will be showing a 20 minute section of her film 'Birth as we Know it) then she and Dr Sarah Buckley, author of Gentle Birth Gentle Mothering, are doing a joint talk.

Find out more about Sarah's incredible work at

The evening will be an informal, playful discussion and presentation, covering topics:
· Preparing for conscious birth, what it takes, what can be done.

· Ecstatic hormones, ecstatic birth: birthing for safety, ease and pleasure.

· Motherbaby: two are one

· Questions from the audience are welcome.

Tickets: $15 if you pre-pay by Monday 24 January 2011. $20 at the door. Birth partners are just $5 extra.

How to book: Email and say how many tickets you'd like then transfer the correct money to the Maternity Coalition bank account with a reference that starts with QLD and then your surname. For example "QLD Smethurst."

Bank account details:
Maternity Coalition, Commonwealth Bank
BSB 063 167
Account number 10108586

We should have a PayPal account set up by next week as another payment option. I will post details once that option is ready.

Seating is strictly limited and it's going to be a popular event so book early so you get your seat.

If you are expecting a baby - please come along and hear things about birth you'll hear from no-one else. This info applies whether you are birthing with a private obstetrician or midwife or public hospital or at home. Please bring along your birthing partner (only $5 for them to come along too) and let your other friends know. You will hear invaluable information that will help you and your baby get the best start in life together.

If you are a midwifery student - please pass this note along to all your peers so they get the once in a career opportunity to hear two of birth's 'greats' talk about why birth matters.

If you are a birth worker - please come along and bring your colleagues and clients. You will not be disappointed.

If you belong to another maternity group, please forward this note to all your members.

This is probably going to be MC QLD's only fundraiser for the year so please support it by sending this info to your networks and getting this message out far and wide.

Any questions, please email Jo Smethurst at

Huge thanks to Elena and Sarah for coming to MC with this idea. We are very grateful.