Mums and dads-to-be across the South Tees are set to benefit from a new set of resources to help them from pregnancy into parenthood.
Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council and Middlesbrough Council have joined forces with the South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to launch resources developed by the parent and child charity Best Beginnings at both Redcar Coast and Hemlington Children Centres.
The four main resources consist of: Baby Buddy, the personalised smartphone app; From Bump to Breastfeeding, a set of DVDs following real mothers’ experiences of feeding; Small Wonders, supporting the care of sick or premature babies; and Baby Express, a month-by-month magazine covering the first year of a baby's life.
The free resources aim to help mums and dads-to-be with all the information they need to give their new bundle of joy the best start in life. They have been developed with input from parents and health and early years’ professionals, including the Department for Health and the Royal College of Midwives.
Kay Branch, Midwife Consultant from the South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said:
“These resources are fantastic for all parents; they provide accurate advice in an accessible way.
“With a combination of informative videos, magazine and the mobile phone app we will be able to help and offer even more support to parents during this exciting time of their lives.”
One mum who has tried the Baby Buddy app, Lisa Crier from Brotton, said:
“I think the app is great as it lets you ask questions that you might think are silly, at any time, day or night.
“The information is easy to understand, and you get daily updates on how your bump and then baby are developing, as well as tips on looking after yourself as a new mum.
“You can personalise your avatar, put reminders in the calendar about appointments, watch videos, and search for local information. It’s definitely a great support.”
The Baby Buddy app has already proved to be a success in other areas in the country: over 56,000 people have downloaded the app since its launch in November 2014, with 88% of mums questioned saying it helped them feel closer to their baby; the From Bump to Breastfeeding films have been viewed by over two million families since 2008, with 99% of mums who watched it before their baby was born saying they found it useful; Small Wonders films are being used in 85% of UK hospitals with neonatal units; and Baby Express has been shown to improve early relationships and child development, and supports the Healthy Child Programme.
To find out more about the resources and download the app, go to www.bestbeginnings.org.uk, ask a health professional or visit a Children’s Centre.