Blog

Supporting a nation starts with Babes

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We've proven our approach for supporting women facing crisis pregnancy - now we're taking our successful model national.

That's right - The Babes Project is now for pregnant women and new mums right across Australia! And wow, our expansion comes as demand for perinatal support skyrockets.

From today, we're launching new national services, building on nine years working with hundreds of women facing tough situations in Melbourne’s east and south-east.

The new support is mobile and flexible, and driven by our passion to get all young families access to the best possible start to life.

Over the next week, we'll be sharing all the details of two big initiatives to grow our free service, and celebrating the support we can now offer to all pregnant women.

Sound big? It should! Because The Babes Project is hugely serious about ensuring no new mother has to go it alone. 

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First-time forum inspires a new conversation

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INSPIRING STORIES: Our incredible panel of big-impact mums, moderated by amazing ABC Babytalk presenter Penny Johnston. Photography by Miranda Mayle

Can we be super-honest for a moment, Babes tribe?

Truth is, when we decided just before Easter that The Babes Project should put on a forum to coincide with Mother's Day, we weren't sure what we were getting into. 

We'd never put on a forum before. We didn't know who we'd get to speak. We didn't know if anyone would show up!

But then, everything we do at Babes is about a taking leap of faith - with the right support in place, of course! So once we had the idea for a day-long discussion on empowered motherhood, leadership, and a better society for all women, there was no choice but to forge ahead. 

And wow, aren't we glad that we did! The Rewriting Motherhood Forum delighted, informed, and most importantly inspired - and we can't stop thinking about everything we learned. 

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Rewriting Motherhood - one year on, so many to go!

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Were you with Babes when we launched our Rewriting Motherhood book at Parliament House?

Hard to believe this week marks a whole year since that exciting day - and whether you were by our sides then, or you've joined our journey since, May 10 still stands tall as a milestone day for our movement for mamas!

Surrounded by politicians and power brokers, movers and shakers, The Babes Project stepped in and stood up alongside our reason for being - the mothers we work with, support, and empower. 

These brave mamas had already shared their tough and tender stories in Rewriting Motherhood. On May 10 they fronted up - bubs in tow! - to own and celebrate them as we launched the book. 

You wouldn't think of Parliament House as the most comfortable place to talk about the fear and overwhelm of a crisis pregnancy. Or the exhaustion of a screaming baby, when there's no support, no back-up, no one coming to help. 

But somehow, Babes transformed that place of politics and power struggles, to a warm, welcoming, safe space for our mothers. And a year on, the transformation is ongoing - and we're not stopping at Parliament. 

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Our gorgeous Babes nursery, recreated in Queen's Hall at Victorian Parliament House, as part of the Rewriting Motherhood launch and exhibition in May 2017. 

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Mark Mother's Day by empowering mamas!

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The mainstream image of Mothers’ Day is a never-changing scene – fluffy slippers and dressing-gowns, a steaming cuppa, angelic and well-groomed little people clamouring, a devoted husband overseeing delivery of hot breakfast.

Yet the ever-evolving realities of motherhood couldn’t be more diverse, or less fluffy!

At Babes, we are constantly awed by the mountain-moving mamas growing and transforming their roles in big and small business, in leadership, in activism, and at home.  

So this Mother's Day, we're determined to celebrate, discuss, and empower motherhood in all its forms – alongside mothers from all walks of life. And you're invited! 

On Friday, 11 May 2018, join us for our inaugural Rewriting Motherhood forum, a one-day event for mothers to engage, network, and share their experiences and their inspiration.

At Waterman Business Centre at Caribbean Park (44 Lakeview Dr, Scoresby), the forum will feature high-profile mothers Jamila Rizvi (journalist and author of Not Just Lucky and The Motherhood) and Emma Race (ABC Grandstand presenter and creator of Help Me Help You app).

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Together we’re so much better

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At The Babes Project, every day we see the huge difference we’re making to women facing crisis pregnancy, and their families, and communities.

Across our 18-month free program of regular support and relentless love, we witness our perinatal care transform women - from overwhelmed, scared, vulnerable and desperate in their early pregnancy, to confident, secure, and prepared for loving motherhood. 

Our unique therapeutic support model is empowering, and can help halt the cycle of poverty, insecurity and trauma that undermines the healthy development of so many children.

Babes can make this massive impact thanks to generous and ongoing giving from our incredible tribe of supporters.

And it’s not enough that we see the difference we make – we want every one of you to see it too!

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Women celebrating women - and then some!

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A couple of our Mamas and their gorgeous bubs on IWD2018, celebrating with Helen and Jordan. Photography by Miranda Mayle.

It's a common joke that the opposite is true in the big bad world, but here at The Babes Project, it really does feel like every day is International Women's Day.

That's because, every day we get to see first-hand the incredible fierceness, tenacity and capacity of our Mamas, when they're finally supported and allowed to embrace themselves, and their motherhood.  

BUT, we never mind an excuse to share their stories and success with a crowd - or crack the champers in their honour! (And of course, to remind everyone of just how far we have to go, to ensure every pregnant woman can be empowered for motherhood.)

So it was on International Women's Day Eve, Wednesday 7 March, that we gathered our community supporters, sponsors, health care partners, media and Babes family, for a Brunch and Bubbles event to celebrate Babes!

Even more exciting, the brunch was a chance to announce our newest family member! Jordan Ablett is already an amazing young woman, as an integration aide, model, community advocate and wife to AFL player Gary Ablett - now she's stepping into another spotlight as a Babes Ambassador.

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Time to change the world with us!

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Three of our gorgeous-hearted Babes volunteers, Em, Amy and Holly. 

Did you have that feeling of overwhelm during pregnancy and early parenthood, and wished there'd been support for you?

Do you know the difference a helping hand can make when women are at their most vulnerable?

Or do you just want a world where new mothers get the best support possible?

The Babes Project is here for women facing crisis pregnancy – and we can’t help them without people like you.

If you can make time in 2018, Babes has so many ways we can use it - and so many lives to change. 

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We're not waiting any more!

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No doubt that Babes mamas know how to wait - but pregnant mothers shouldn't have to keep waiting for holistic perinatal care. 

At some point in every pregnancy, every mother gets the questions: “How long have been pregnant?”, “How long to go now?”

And at least once, in every pregnancy, the technically untrue but definitely justifiable response comes out: “Forever!”

In other words, pregnant women are used to waiting.

We’ve all seen the Hallmark images - patiently stroking her big belly, the calm and comfy mum-to-be ready to wait forever to meet her bub.

But we all know that’s not the reality.

And while nine months of waiting for baby is inevitable, pregnant women can't afford to keep waiting for holistic, supportive and empowering perinatal care. 

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She names her baby

Screen_Shot_2018-01-02_at_2.05.15_pm.pngIf you're around The Babes Project Admin Hub when we hear news of one of our Mamas having her baby you'll most likely be swept up in the fun. Whoever sees the news first calls out "Babyyyy!" and everyone stops what they're doing... "who who? Who is it?" And we spend a few moments gushing over a photo sent, a mama's message, the sweetest name. 

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Good news in a tough month

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Is it just us, or can November seem like a series of great big downers for mothers?

Many of us have barely recovered the heart-wrenching stories that mark October's Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day, and suddenly our Facebook feed is another tear-inducing onslaught.

First it's Perinatal Depression and Anxiety Awareness Week (one in seven new mums affected!), and National Adoption Awareness Week (46,000 Australian children in out-of-home care!)

Then World Prematurity Day highlights everything that might go wrong in a pregnancy - and too often, the agonising days and weeks that follow a tiny bub arriving a little too soon. 

On November 20, the Universal Day of the Child reminds us how many children are born into poverty and violence, then November 25 marks the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women

Even thinking about all the challenges that women - and especially new mothers - can face is exhausting and overwhelming. 

So just imagine living through any of these nightmares - and doing it without support.   

At Babes, we're determined to make help available for the women who need it most. 

And excitingly, our team is making great progress getting the community on board!

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