A partnership with Advance to provide individual support for pregnant women and new mothers with involvement from the Criminal Justice System who are living in the community.
Birth Companions has been working with women involved in the criminal justice system for the last 25 years, so we understand the added stress that women face when they are on probation, community license, post release or any involvement with the Criminal Justice System. Our friendly and informal support is designed to help women feel positive and confident about their choices around pregnancy, birth and motherhood, whatever other issues they face in their lives.
Currently, this service is available to women who are engaging with the Advance WrapAround support. We only accept referrals via Advance and their partners.
Support through pregnancy, birth and motherhood
We provide information, based on women's individual needs and interests, on topics such as pregnancy health and wellbeing, positions for labour and birth, options for pain relief, feeding choices and infant sleeping. We can also help women think about their preferences for labour and birth, and support them to share these with health professionals involved in their care.
For women who are already experienced mothers we offer a birth debrief. The opportunity for women to talk through their previous birth experiences can help to resolve questions and anxieties, paving the way for a better birth experience and smooth transition to parenting.
Around the time of birth, we can provide additional telephone support to reassure and guide women, increasing their sense of control and calm.
After the birth and up to 2 years afterwards, we can continue informational, emotional and advocacy support. We can also direct women to services that provide practical items and help women find out about mother and baby groups she can attend in her local area.
Support through pregnancy loss and separation
We provide support for women who experience pregnancy loss due to miscarriage or stillbirth. Supporting women who have been separated from a baby is another vital part of our work in the community. We provide ongoing emotional support through this process and can help advocate for women and signpost them to additional specialist services.
Remote and in person support
Our experience of working with women during Covid-19 has shown that remote support can be as valuable as support in person. Many women lead busy lives but still appreciate the opportunity to talk about their choices around pregnancy, birth and motherhood. In addition to emotional support via telephone, we can also provide practical information via email that is tailored to women’s needs.
For women living in London, we are also able to provide support in person; during pregnancy and after the birth, we can visit a woman at home or meet her in a place she chooses.