Dads-to-be now have the opportunity to attend a special two-hour class to help them learn the basics of child care, such as nappy changing, as well as the opportunity to ask maternity staff any questions they may have.
The service, which was launched by the Jane Crookall Maternity Unit at Noble’s Hospital in November 2013, has been designed to address a specific gap in education services for expectant dads.
Anne-Marie Steele, a Midwife at Noble’s Hospital, said: “A lot of focus in terms of education goes on expectant mums and also the mum and dad as a couple, but we found that there wasn’t really provision for soon-to-be-dads in their own right.
“Some dads become concerned about their lack of contact with new born babies, particularly as birth approaches. We felt that a new Daddy Baby Care class would give dads-to-be the chance to ask questions and build their confidence in an environment with other men who may have the some concerns, questions and worries. It also gives them an opportunity to learn those all-important basic skills for when the baby arrives.”
Dads-to-be have the opportunity to learn about changing nappies, bathing, handling, feeding and the importance of bonding. There’s also the opportunity to meet a dad and baby, so that other expectant fathers can ask questions of someone who has been through the process. There are also discussions on the signs and symptoms of post-natal depression and details of the support available.
Dianne Rubery, a Midwife involved in the scheme added: “We’ve had a successful pilot period and the classes have gone down extremely well with dads-to-be. We are keen to raise awareness about this facility so that we can reach as many expectant fathers as possible. The classes provide a comfortable environment where dads-to-be can explore all the aspects of baby care and where fears and anxieties can be expressed and practical skills learnt. Dads are a vital part of the family unit and we’re keen to do anything we can to help strengthen that family unit in those first hours, days and weeks following a birth.”
Sessions are held once a month on a Tuesday at Noble’s Hospital. Any dads-to-be who are interested should contact the Jane Crookall Maternity Unit on 650030.