We regularly run and participate in events to share knowledge, help develop new insights and ideas, and shape practice across the health, social and criminal justice systems.
Information about some of our recent events is provided here.
If you would like more details on any of these recent events, please contact us.
Blackpool Better Start Annual Conference 2021 - Rebuilding the future: putting babies and children first
Birth Companions hosted a session at the Blackpool Better Start Annual Conference ‘Rebuilding the future: putting babies and children first’. We explored the intersections between criminal justice and children’s social services during pregnancy and early motherhood, and were delighted to be joined by Becky Wray and Joanne Mulcahy from PACT to hear about their social work pilot in women’s prisons. You can watch the session here.
Mothers on trial: Exploring the intersections between criminal justice and children's social care during pregnancy and early motherhood
Birth Companions and the Centre for Child and Family Justice Research at Lancaster University hosted this online workshop to explore the intersections between the criminal justice system and children’s social care during pregnancy and early motherhood. The event brought together front-line professionals, women with lived experience, commissioners, academics and policymakers to discuss the potential for restoring and renewing holistic approaches to work with pregnant women and mothers of infants on the ‘edge of care’ and those subject to pre-birth assessments and newborn care proceedings who also have CJS involvement. We hosted a number of breakout discussions on specific issues, including the value of pre-birth specialism, the opportunities provided by the new probation services, and priorities within the prison system. Recordings, slides and other resources from this event are now open and accessible for all, via this dedicated webpage.
Pre-birth social work: The value of specialism
Part of the British Association of Social Workers (BASW) 80/20 campaign
Birth Companions’ Head of Policy and Communications Kirsty Kitchen shared insights and recommendations on the value of pre-birth specialism in children’s social care, alongside powerful contributions on the lived experience of newborn removal by Angela Frazer-Wicks. This event was held online as part of BASW’s ongoing 80/20 campaign for more relationship-based social work. A recording of the event is available on request.
Pre-birth work and infant care proceedings in the prison environment
Kirsty Kitchen, Head of Policy and Communications, spoke alongside academics Lucy Baldwin and Caroline Bald on the specific challenges to working effectively with pregnant women and mothers of infants subject to care proceedings while in prison. This event was hosted by the British Association of Social Workers (BASW)'s Black Country branch.
Report launch: A window of opportunity
Birth Companions co-hosted this online event with our partners at Clinks to launch our joint research report on the experiences and needs of pregnant women and new mothers in contact with the criminal justice system in the community in England. Our Director Naomi Delap and Head of Policy and Communications Kirsty Kitchen were joined by Anne Fox and Zahra Wynne of Clinks and Kate Davies CBE, Director of Health and Justice at NHS England to discuss the report’s key findings and recommendations. Read the report here.
International Women’s Day 2021
Disrupted Lives: #ChooseToChallenge Maternal Imprisonment
Birth Companions and Clean Break co-hosted this special online International Women’s Day event, Disrupted Lives: #ChooseToChallenge Maternal Imprisonment, to challenge the sentencing of pregnant women and mothers of young children.
The evening event included moving performances from Clean Break’s plays and a panel discussion exploring the issues relating to maternal imprisonment, championing women’s resilience through adversity, and opening up conversations around how we can all help drive positive change.
Hosted by Lorraine Maher, Clean Break’s Participation Manager, the panel included:
• Tanya Tracey, Deputy Chair at Clean Break;
• Dr Shona Minson, Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Centre for Criminology at the University of Oxford;
• Naomi Delap, Director at Birth Companions;
• Michelle, a member of the Birth Companions Lived Experience Team.
Pregnancy and early motherhood in the prison environment: Considering mental health
Kirsty Kitchen, our Head of Policy and Communications, spoke at a national conference for the Royal College of Psychiatrists' Quality Network for Prison Mental Health Services.
What Good Looks Like: A national partnership approach to supporting those in prison at risk of self-harm and suicide
A virtual conference organised by NHS England and Her Majesty's Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS) to share learnings and consider implications for practice, bringing health and HMPPS together. Kirsty Kitchen, Birth Companions’ Head of Policy and Communications, led a breakout session on pregnancy and early motherhood in the prison environment.