1 Million for Mums - Jackie's story


A NEW LIFE: Jackie was able to start over as she embraced motherhood with her little Cleo. Photograph by Miranda Mayle Photography.

As part of our 1 Million for Mums campaign in 2020, we're sharing the stories of some of the mamas The Babes Project has walked alongside. 

We began with Jackie, who stared down a tough past to build her daughter a beautiful future.  


“I told him it was me or the drugs, and he ended up choosing the drug life – and I found out not long after that I was pregnant.”

It seemed like a nightmare scenario when Jackie discovered she was expecting in late 2018.

At 23, Jackie had used drugs and alcohol almost daily for eight years, trying to numb the pain of a traumatic childhood, and an adult life spiralling out of control.

“I knew I was doing really bad stuff, it had even gone to court but luckily charges were dropped and I was on a good behaviour bond,” she explains.

“I’d even had an overdose scare, I had to be resuscitated on a train.”

Although Jackie wanted to make changes, the traumatic death of her fiancé, and several toxic relationships, meant old habits were hard to kick.

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Here for each and every mama


FOR ALL WOMEN: We're all about empowering new mamas at Babes - and it's something we want for every woman. Images by Miranda Mayle Photography

Babes is founded on the ideal of women working together, and just how strong our society could be if each and every woman was supported and empowered in her motherhood. 

But today's International Women Day - and the theme "Each for Equal" - starkly shows the inequalities still faced by so many women in Australia.

Women are more likely to face domestic violence when pregnant. One in five women experience perinatal depression. Primary caring can reduce earning capacity, and therefore independence. And in violent or abusive situations, children are too often turned hostages to make a woman stay. 

We're proud of how far we've come in the past decade of Babes - and of every woman who put her hand up to say that she wanted to own motherhood, and she wanted our support to do it.

But to achieve an equal society, we need to be able to tell woman that they can become a mother without becoming more vulnerable. 

It can happen, with the right support - and Babes needs your commitment to deliver it. 

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A million for mums - make your voice heard!


Motherhood makes women more vulnerable.

It’s not something we want to acknowledge – as women, or as a society.

But it's true. 

Women are more likely to face domestic violence when pregnant. One in five women experience perinatal depression. Primary caring can reduce earning capacity, and therefore independence. And in violent or abusive situations, children are too often turned hostages to make a woman stay.

At Babes, we've seen all those situations - and so many more - undermine a new mother's confidence, her security, and her ability to grow connection with her newborn. 

But we've also seen how pregnant women and new mothers, rise from the toughest situations, and thrive in their motherhood. 

They just need support at that most crucial, and most vulnerable time. And record numbers of women are reaching out for it. 

But without The Babes Project - where would they turn?

With your help to raise $1 million, Babes is determined to let them know we'll always be here for them. 

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Join our mission to help mamas thrive


BRIGHT FUTURES: Babes team with some of our inspiring program graduates, and their thriving little ones. Photograph by Miranda Mayle Photography.

Did you do it tough during pregnancy and early parenthood, and wished there'd been support for you?

Do you know the difference real support and connection 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 on a mission to help families thrive, by ensuring all women can access vital perinatal support. 

And across all our centres - in Croydon, Frankston and Cairns - we're looking for passionate volunteers who can commit to helping us achieve that vision. 

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Thanks is not enough



There's not enough words to tell you how grateful we are. 

Our dream of The Babes Project Cairns has become a reality - and it's because of our incredible, generous and faithful Babes tribe. 

Together, we raised a huge $68,573 to ensure that our new Cairns centre not only opened, but it will thrive. 

We can say thank you a million times, but really, it's the work that will speak the most. 


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Cairns mamas, you're not alone!

MKM20190826115653.jpgNew Babes mama Hollie and bub Roxie know the journey is worth every step. Photo by Miranda Mayle Photography

Ever had that feeling that there's still so far to go?

It's 3000 km from Croydon to Cairns, and here at Babes right now, we're feeling every step of the journey!

No, of course we're not actually walking it - but establishing a new centre feels like a marathon (one of those ultra ones, through the deserts and for days!) 

And right now we're at that hardest last stretch, where a helping hand can make all the difference.

Our crowdfund goal for opening The Babes Project Cairns is getting closer - and we can make it, with your incredible support. 

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Vote now to boost Babes' mission and mamas!


Mothers. They’re incredible.

That was our absolute core belief when we first started The Babes Project - and ten years working with pregnant and new mums doing it tough has only made us more certain.

Mums have so much power and potential to build a better world around them, even when that world has dealt them a pretty rough start.

As we support and empower hundreds of mamas every year through our holistic perinatal program, we see them transform their lives, nurture their families, and thrive in motherhood.

Babes is also dedicated to celebrating how much each of those women has achieved – and that’s why we’re so excited to be finalists in the 2019 AusMumpreneur Awards, another national initiative celebrating everything mums can do!

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A decade of Babes - and beyond (to Cairns!)


Helen Parker OAM (left) and volunteers and mamas, ready to celebrate a decade of The Babes Project. Photography by Miranda Mayle

Since 2009, The Babes Project has stood with pregnant and new mothers as they have faced and overcome the challenges of their early motherhood journey.

And today sees our biggest milestone so far – a decade of Babes' commitment to supporting and empowering mothers holistically through the perinatal period, even as they struggle with teen pregnancy and single parenting, domestic violence, drug and alcohol issues, family breakdown and isolation. 

From our earliest days, The Babes Project has been building a powerful solution to a nationwide issue.

Across Australia, women are allowed to remain isolated and vulnerable as they raise their children.  No one who believes in our next generation should be okay with that – and our perinatal program is a proven and transformative intervention.  

So yes, we are celebrating a milestone - but don't for a second think we're resting on our laurels. Or resting at all!

Our tenth birthday is also a chance to yet again think bigger - and you don't get much bigger than Far North Queensland!

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Forget glossy - our magazine mamas are strong and striving


STORIES TO INSPIRE: Cristina, with little ones Eden and Peter, is a Babes graduate and the cover mama of our Rewriting Motherhood e-zine. Photography by Miranda Mayle

When The Babes Project set out on our Rewriting Motherhood mission three years ago, we wanted to challenge the narrow mainstream stereotype of motherhood. 

Day in, day out, we were working with incredible new mothers who were facing every type of challenge in their pregnancy and parenting, and bravely striving for the best for their little families. 

Their decisions and dedication were rarely celebrated, however - and too often, they were denigrated as "not enough". 

Babes mamas might not fit the "good mother" stereotype that society idolises, but Babes has seen just how they can transform lives for themselves and those around them, with the right support.

In 2017, our first Rewriting Motherhood book told the stories of ten of these transformative women, and their achievements still resonate with and inspire hundreds of mothers we work with every year. 

In 2018, we invited our communities to be part of the conversation, hosting the first Rewriting Motherhood Forum, and giving a platform to Babes participants, supporters, and diverse mothers who wanted a voice.  

Now this year we're launching a Rewriting Motherhood ezine - a free online magazine that grows the storytelling and celebration of Rewriting Motherhood. 

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Seeing a community to believe in

MKM20190211132941.jpgHELP FOR REAL: Babes team member Emma prepares a new baby and mama basket. Photos by Miranda Mayle Photography.

It's something new mothers get sick of hearing: "There's plenty of help available."

Because while it might technically be true, it's not helpful - not when the onus is on the overwhelmed new mum to jump through hoops to access it, not when it's one-size-fits-all, and not when it never actually appears, anyway. 

It's knowing that feeling, of being helpless in the face of "available" help, that made Babes so determined to be on the front foot of providing support to new mamas. 

Our proven perinatal program includes real and tangible ways of helping women feel equipped and empowered.

But better than that, they also feel supported by the community around them, knowing the thoughtful care that's seen hundreds of people contribute to Equip a Babes Mama

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