Giving birth to ideas making a difference
ROBYN Jones is out to make a difference in the lives of needy mums simply by selling baby wraps.
The former media and advertising professional founded her own business Mama Maya in March, selling muslin baby wraps.
She also partnered with the Birthing Kit Foundation Australia, to fund one birthing kit in a developing country for every wrap sold.
Jones’s business idea came from her own complicated, high-risk pregnancies.
“Not long after giving birth to one of my sons, I heard about the work of the Birthing Kit Foundation Australia – providing clean birthing kits to women in remote areas of the world,’’ she says.
“In Australia, six in 100,000 women die each year due to pregnancy complications or childbirth, but in a country like Uganda, it’s one in 16.
“I realised how lucky I was to have a clean and safe place to give birth with trained caregivers.
“I wanted to do something to increase awareness of this issue and help reduce the rate of mother and baby morbidity and mortality.
“By taking something that every parent of babies owns multiples of (a simple muslin wrap), I built a business with a focus on stylish design, sustainability and philanthropy.”
The birthing kits which are assembled in Australia are distributed in 20 countries.
“It’s really humbling to know that so many women have little or no support during childbirth, or access to a hygienic place to birth – things that we just take for granted here,” Jones says.
Birthing Kits contain a plastic sheet, gauze, gloves, soap, a sterile scalpel blade, and some string to tie off the umbilical cord.
“The items are so basic but essential in enabling a mother to deliver her baby in a safer, cleaner environment, reducing the chances of infection,” Jones adds.
Jones says the business has been a rewarding one and encourages people to support worthy causes.
But she warns mums keen to set up their own business to do their homework well and “know that it’s not a part-time affair”.
Just like being a mum, having a business means we are never off duty, she says.
“Ensure you have the support you need and family help. It’s hard work starting a business, let alone doing it while focusing on your own children.”
Jones’s next aim is to fund 100,000 birthing kits by the time Mama Maya turns three. For more details see: mamamaya.com.au