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Nui programme celebrates a year of success, next free course starts tomorrow

Tuesday 7 May 2024 | Written by Supplied | Published in Health, Local, National


Nui programme celebrates a year of success, next free course starts tomorrow
Rereao Vano and Lisa Hesp with visiting breastfeeding specialist Karen Palmer. SUPPLIED /24050607

Nui programme celebrates a year of success, next free course starts tomorrow.

The six-week programme is designed for pregnant women/vaine nui and their support people (e.g. partner, husband, mother, sister, friend), and covers topics such as healthy pregnancy, preparing for labour and birth, roles of support people, and the early days of parenting.

Cook Islands Child Welfare Association member Lisa Hesp says the community-based classes are run by local registered nurse and midwife Rereao Vano and herself.

The pair have been delivering the “Nui” courses since May last year.

So far, 22 pregnant mothers and 26 support people that are family members and friends have attended the classes.

“We collect feedback from the group at the end of each course and it has been really encouraging,” says Hesp. 

Hesp said they wanted to create a safe and welcoming space for Nui mamas and their supporters to connect and share with others on this journey and to be better prepared for labour, giving birth and taking care of their newborn. 

She said the feedback from those attending so far tells them they are achieving their goal.

Nui was started by a group of community volunteers and health professionals in response to conversations with new parents that wished they had more information and support during pregnancy so they knew what to expect and what to do when they went into labour and once the baby arrived. 

“We were fortunate to get some start-up funding for a pilot course from Professor John Dunn, surgeon and owner of Motu Villas. Then we secured a grant from the Australian High Commission to run the classes for another year,” Hesp said.

Their next free course starts tomorrow, Wednesday, May 8, at 5pm. It will be held at the Cook Islands Child Welfare Association in Takuvaine.

Nui mamas are encouraged to bring a support person – papa-to-be, mum, sister, aunty or a friend, or attend on your own. 

Contact Hesp on 55244 or message the “Nui” Facebook page to register.