Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Birth Environment

After being involved with my local hospital planning a new Maternity unit, it got me thinking about birth environment.
I went round a couple of years ago with the NCT Better Birth environment toolkit and as a Doula I have been at births in quite a few hospitals in the NW of England.
I often feel that so much more could be done to improve the environment.
Whilst I am a committed advocate for birthing at home, some women are just not ready to choose this option.
Things have improved slightly with 'Home from Home' rooms and midwife led units, but hospital is never going to be home and so often these rooms look like cheap hotel rooms
There is no real commitment to design that facilitates physiological birth or reduces fear and pain and I have felt for a long time, much more could be done than the installation of disco balls!
To this end I have organised a Design collaboration and we will be exhibiting at FACT in Liverpool in March and May-

A Space to give birth in* First of Two workshops within Climate of Change at FACT
Come to Watch - Breathe Talk + Do
There is a room made between the instinctive body and hospital practice where babies arrive. We are interested to design proposals to develop ways in which that space can help birth preparation, labour and recovery.
WATCH - Birth Matters- a Short film created by Nadine Edwards from the charity AIMS (association for improvements in Maternity services)
BREATHE- Group workshop and display of yoga, movement and breathing to facilitate birth by Doula Jenni Jones
TALK - contribute to our process by sharing your experiences or recommendations for spaces of birth
DO - Public creation of two giant collages/mood boards of 'Births - the experience and environment' - this may be an ideal or actual experience. We are a X-disciplinary team of students + health + design professionals. This is a collaboration between Deverra, Doula UK, LJMU, National Childbirth Trust, AIMS, Liverpool PCT and FACT.

See this link for more info-

I will update soon with photo's!

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