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.
Like many women, we witness the flurry of invites and fuss of female achievement around women's achievement.
Our founder and CEO Helen Parker has spent the week addressing IWD gatherings, and she's seeing real passion amongst listeners, for improving opportunities for women, and stepping up how we support them.
FOR NOW AND ALWAYS: Babes founder Helen Parker OAM addresses an IWD lunch. Photo courtesy of Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
But here's the thing: once a year isn't enough, and a one-off effort achieves nothing.
In Australia, when vulnerable women face crises, they receive - at best - band-aid solutions. That's whether it's crisis pregnancy, domestic and family violence, disengagement from health services, mental health and addition issues, family breakdown, or so many other tough situations. And as Helen explains, it's making big problems worse.
"Australia - STOP 'rescuing'!" Helen says. "When we apply band-aid solutions we are disconnecting women from the support they need."
"If women are connected to a service that can meet their needs, and at the same time empowering them, then they will be connected to a place that will pick up on DFV, crisis points and babies safety."
"But a one-off delivery of nappies or a pram, ultimately that just creates further isolation - and women deserve better."
Over a decade now, Babes has developed a holistic program that educates and empowers vulnerable new mothers.
This IWD, we're calling on Australians to back us, and show the mothers of Australia, we're ready to back them too.
"When you invest in Babes, you re investing in the wellbeing of so many young families," Helen says.
"Babes is taking responsibility for an area that hasn't been properly addressed by the Government, for generations - and it's time to that around."
Even if you aren't marking International Women's Day, you've probably seen the transformative power of nurturing support in some aspect of your life.
Supporting The Babes Project supports women who are at their most vulnerable, and yet who have the most potential to shape new lives for the better. And what could be more powerful than that?
Please give to our $1 Million for Mums campaign, ad ensure Babes is there for women, now and whenever they need us most.