International Day of the Midwife 2017
May 5th every year is a special day in a midwife’s calendar, its International Day of the Midwife and aims to highlight the work of midwives around the world. There’s nothing midwives enjoy more than a good celebration, after all every day we are celebrating new life and new families, but on May the 5th we also get to celebrate each other and our profession.
International Day of the Midwife was established by the International Confederation of Midwives in 1992 and has since been celebrated every year. The ICM launches a new campaign every year to provide a motivating call to action for all midwives to get involved and champion our work. This years theme is “Midwives, Mothers and Families: Partners for Life!”, helping midwives everywhere understand that by working in partnership with women and their families they can support them to make better decisions about what they need to have a safe and fulfilling birth. Alongside its yearly theme, the ICM also use IDM to promote its on-going theme of “The World Needs Midwives Today More Than Ever” as part of a continuing campaign to highlight the need for more midwives.
You only have to look at twitter and the #IDM2017 to see how excited the world of midwifery is about this special day. It is being celebrated in many different ways ranging from light-hearted cake decorating competitions to special lectures and conferences combined with raising money for charity.
At the Bradford Royal Infirmary the midwives have been busy baking and collecting raffle prizes for our own celebrations on Friday. To mark the day and each other, a ‘tree of why we are midwives’ is being created, with each midwife invited to draw around their hand and write on what they love about being a midwife. The hands will form the leaves of the tree and represent each midwife in the unit. There will also be a raffle to raise money for Action on Postpartum Psychosis and we have been collecting unwanted toiletries to donate to local womens refuges. Between 8am and 12pm there will be an IDM2017 tea party in the maternity reception with lots of tea and cake for a donation to Womens Aid. This tea party will then continue into the afternoon in the Parent Education Room with a sing a long for mums and babies and other competitions such as guess how many jelly babies are in the womb!
The International Day of the Midwife is an opportunity for midwives to make new contacts, think about each other and to raise awareness of what our profession does for the world. Of course, we will have some fun along the way and put caring for women, their babies and families at the centre of all we do.
Kate Robinson, Midwife.