A Sunshine Coast nurse is going the extra mile to spearhead a new program to support newborn babies and their mothers who are experiencing hardships due to domestic violence and you can help by supporting this month’s 92.7 MIX FM’s Give Me 5 appeal.
Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service (SCHHS) Clinical Nurse Consultant Laura Easterbrook, who works with at-risk children and families within the Child Protection Liaison Unit (Children’s Plus) has applied to Wishlist to fund a Clinical Nurse position for high-risk women and babies.
The need is great with around 80 women and babies currently receiving support through our local public health service.
Ms Easterbrook says the first 1000 days of life is critical to the wellbeing of a newborn.
“What occurs during this crucial time can have profound consequences throughout life,” Ms Easterbrook said.
“And the highest mortality risk for mothers in Queensland occurs in the first 12 months following birth with poor outcomes linked to domestic violence, substance abuse, and mental health.”
“This program will see the development of a combined Midwifery and Child Health Nurse Model to join forces with a Children’s Plus Social Worker. We anticipate this continuity of care approach will improve outcomes for mothers and babies’ health, and reduce the number placed into care.”
Ms Easterbrook envisions the initiative will also provide a strong foundation for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and challenges that may arise before and after birth.
“We aim to reduce the over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander infants being placed into out-of-home care before they are one. Across Australia Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children are removed from their homes at a rate of nine times more than that of non-Indigenous infants,” she said.
“Through the project, we hope to see more women participate in an environment where they don’t feel judged, stereotyped or stigmatised, so they can work with Health and Child Safety collaboratively and transparently.”
Help us fund this important new program by attending a 92.7 MIX FM Give Me 5 event, or donate now.