Lilly Nash, with her newborn baby, Ally May Nash, and mother Susan Nash participated in the Stanthorpe Hospital's new antenatal classes designed for younger mothers. Looking on are midwives (back, from left) Jacinta Manahan, Jo Marsden, Josephine Bell and Liezl Elks.
Lilly Nash, with her newborn baby, Ally May Nash, and mother Susan Nash participated in the Stanthorpe Hospital's new antenatal classes designed for younger mothers. Looking on are midwives (back, from left) Jacinta Manahan, Jo Marsden, Josephine Bell and Liezl Elks. Contributed

Program eases fears of young mothers

AN INITIATIVE at Stanthorpe Hospital is helping young women as they prepare to become first-time mothers.

After noticing a number of young women were accessing antenatal services at the Stanthorpe Hospital, staff decided to tailor a specific program for these clients.

"Research shows that younger mothers are at greater risk of interventions as well as social, financial and parenting issues,” hospital midwife Josephine Bell said.

"With this knowledge, a collaboration occurred between the midwives, social worker and our director of nursing to establish a support and education group for women in this age category.”

Pregnant women under the age of 22 were invited to join the program that featured six one-hour sessions covering information about antenatal, labour and postnatal care.

Lilly Nash, 18, took the course and recently gave birth to her first baby Ally.

"I discovered many helpful services that I had no idea about,” Miss Nash said.

"I was genuinely nervous about the entire pregnancy and coming into motherhood. I am still quite nervous about it all, but now that I have attended Jo's Mothers Group, I know that my anxieties are all normal.”

There are plans to continue Jo's Mothers Group in the future, in conjunction with the hospital's routine antenatal classes run by Jo Marsden.

For more information about hospital maternity servicescontact 46833400.

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