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Press release – issued 9 December 2022
Maternity support service for new parents expands across Herefordshire
A service set up to help new parents on Hereford County Hospital’s maternity ward is celebrating its one year anniversary, and the recent expansion of its team of volunteer mums, who are also now providing support at community groups across Herefordshire.
The ‘peer supporters’, who have first-hand experience of motherhood and provide an extra non-clinical layer of support to new parent’s, started off as a team of five and have doubled in numbers to nine volunteer mum’s, plus a new hospital Baby Friendly support worker role.
Mum, Claire Collins, enjoyed volunteering in the team so much that she decided to join Wye Valley NHS Trust in the new role of UNICEF Baby Friendly maternity support worker, leading the team of peer supporters.
Claire said: “We are delighted to expand our team to provide help to parents with caring for their new baby and infant feeding. We’re also now providing support for infant feeding at community groups across Herefordshire, so please come along for a cup of tea and a chat.”
The community groups take place regularly at the Children's Centres at Widemarsh in Hereford; Ross-on-Wye, and Coningsby in Leominster – visit www.wyevalley.nhs.uk (search for maternity).
Florence Kennedy, new peer supporter volunteer, said: “It is a privilege to be able to offer support to new parents at such a precious time. We have dedicated time to sit and listen and offer help with various aspects of life with a new baby.”
Arwen Nixon, Public Health midwife and Baby Friendly coordinator at Wye Valley NHS Trust, added: “It’s so important that new parents have access to a wide range of support on the maternity ward and when they return home. In addition to our midwives, maternity support workers, and health visiting team, our trained volunteer peer supporters help families with the transition to parenthood, including infant feeding to promote close and loving relationships with their new babies.”
For more information, contact details and community groups, visit:
- Herefordshire Breastfeeding Information Facebook page
- Speak to your midwife or health visitor
- Visit www.wyevalley.nhs.uk (search for maternity)
- Scan this QR code
Peer supporter team at Wye Valley NHS Trust.
Notes to Editors WVT:
- Wye Valley NHS Trust is a provider of health services across Herefordshire and beyond. The Trust exists to improve the wellbeing, independence and health of the people we serve.
- By working closely with our partners, we can make good our promise to deliver a quality of care we would want for ourselves, our families and our friends.
- With an estimated annual turnover of around £295 million, we employ around 3,000 staff. We aim to build new relationships between our staff, patients, service users and their carers with the wider community.
For further information please contact:
Fiona Gurney, communications officer, or John Burnett, Communication and Engagement Manager, Wye Valley NHS Trust: 01432 372928