RELEASE — One in five women experience depression and/or anxiety during pregnancy or after giving birth. In Kingston there are approximately 1800 births every year so that means 360 women struggle with Perinatal Mood Disorder (PMD) every year. Perinatal mood disorder also affects one in ten men, which would be approximately 180 men in Kingston.
That is a lot of people who could use some support, and Kingston Pregnancy Care Centre is meeting that need.
Currently in Kingston there are no longer any support groups to help women or men struggling with PMD. One of the greatest risks for those experiencing PMD is feeling isolated and alone. PMD can effect the bond and/or the development of the baby involved. That is where Baby Steps comes in.
Article continues after ad
Baby Steps Post-Partum Support Group is being run by the Kingston Pregnancy Care Centre (KPCC). It will be a support group for anyone struggling with depression and anxiety during pregnancy and post-partum up to two years post-delivery.
“We want women to know that they are not alone and there is hope,” says Executive Director, Elizabeth Sacrey. “The name is Baby Steps because, together, we can make baby steps towards mental health.”
Baby Steps is facilitated by Heather Steel, Perinatal Support Manager at KPCC, a non-practicing RN. Heather has been volunteering with KPCC for over 6 years. In her role she teaches prenatal classes, co-facilitates a parenting program, helps clients one-on-one during pregnancy and post-partum and is a part of the Prenatal Network and Perinatal Adjustment Coalition in KFL&A. She will now be adding Baby Steps to her portfolio.
Baby Steps will run every Friday from 1:00-3:00pm at KPCC starting Friday, May 24th. Each participant will receive their own handbook to take home with each of the lessons. There will be opportunity for discussion, questions, and sharing. Coffee, tea and snacks will be provided as well. The program is free to anyone who needs it, no OHIP card is needed.
The Centre exists to empower women and men facing unplanned pregnancies with practical help, emotional support, and information about their pregnancy options. All of the services are free and confidential, which makes them a valuable asset to the Kingston community. The Centre offers pregnancy tests, prenatal and parenting classes, mentoring, community referrals and post-abortion support to name a few of the free services provided.
Some client comments include:
“Non-Judgemental, there to listen and provide answers to my questions.”
“The support worker was very kind, knowledgeable and easygoing, and she really helped.”
“Discreet, kind and understanding, just what I needed.”
Kingston Pregnancy Care Centre does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, creed, national origin, age, gender, sexuality or lifestyle of its clients.