Birth of new future for keen midwives
W H E N H e a t h e r L e e ’ s 1 6 - y e a r - o l d d a u g h t e r i s opening her school books this year, the young student will be a role model for her mother.
Mother-of-four and grandmother of eight, Ms Lee has j u s t s t a r t e d w o r k i n g towards becoming a qualif i ed midwife and i t ’ s a course the busy woman will c o mbi n e wi t h f u l l - t i me work.
Ms Lee is part of a new indigenous midwifery pilot program at Townsville Hospital, which was created in an effort to boost the number of indigenous midwives in the district.
‘‘ It will definitely be three years of lots of hard work and study,’’ Ms Lee said.
‘‘ It will be quite intensive ( but) I have wanted to be a midwife since I was very young . . . the opportunities were not there.
‘‘ It’s an honour and a privilege to be given this opportunity from Queensland Health to improve the lives and health of indigenous women and children.’’
Indigenous Health nursing director Roianne West said the pilot program was an exciting opportunity, with 11 students starting the program this year.
‘ ‘ T h e i n d i g e n o u s mi d - wifery pilot ( program) at Townsville Hospital aims to improve maternal and child health outcomes for indigenous mothers and babies by increasing the indigenous midwifery workforce,’’ Ms West said.