The Babes Project founder Helen Parker with graduate mama Lauren and her bub Willow.
It's a proverb from Africa, and one that resonates around the world - to raise a child, it takes a village.
We hear it as friends admonish each other for not seeking help in those tough early days of motherhood. We hear it as folks tut-tut 'young people' gone off the rails. We hear it as mums at the end of a long day dream of a nice village wine bar with a play pen!
But beyond the cliche, what does a "village" actually do - and how can it help as women in crisis pregnancy face a litany of challenges to keep and raise their bubs?
Can a village mentality even exist in our fast-paced, plugged-in, too-busy-to-care world?
At Babes, we're stepping up to say it - we are the village! And we're determined that our village will set the standard for supporting and empowering new mamas in our communities, and Australia-wide.
Pregnant women seek us out for a simple reason – they are overwhelmed, and under-supported.
Expectations, fears, criticisms from friends and family, and too often violence from an intimate partner – it all stands in the way of a woman feeling comfortable and confident in her motherhood, no matter how determined she is to be a mother.
Our unique perinatal programs, and close networks with service providers, help women to develop confidence in their parenting, and to prepare them for the many challenges of motherhood.
Just as important, they develop trust in our dedicated team of Pregnancy Support Workers – a vital emotion for any young mother’s resilience, and one that has too often been damaged or destroyed in negative relationships, as far back as childhood.
It's what a well-functioning village of family and friends should deliver from the start of our lives - but with the help of Babes, our mamas finally get to experience and grow their trust, and ensure it's there for their little ones.
In the past fortnight, our village has grown by four gorgeous new members - welcome to the world, little ones!
But across Australia, there's so much more potential for reaching out to new mamas, and helping them find their confidence, and their village.
Just as importantly, we need to be reaching out to community leaders, policy-makers, people who have the heart for the work ahead, and make them realise the huge gap in our society.
The whole country needs a village, and we need help to keep building.