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We Can’t Show You This Photo of an Abused Baby

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(This article talks about child abuse and neglect, and contains video that may be upsetting)

Our organisation, Baby in Mind, is dedicated to promoting and supporting the bond between parents and babies. Although this bonding is ‘natural’, it doesn’t always come easily to many parents and for many families. It is normal for parents to grapple with feelings of uncertainty and doubt, and for love to take time. We support all parents in bonding with their babies.

But for some parents we work with, the bonding process is completely derailed.  Our educators who work in neonatal intensive care, drug recovery centres, psychiatric units, and child abuse services do some of the most harrowing work in the world: supporting parents (or foster parents) to help their babies love and trust again.

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How One Family Is Building A Village

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‘In the beginning of life, when we are infants, we need others to survive. At the end of life, we need others to survive. But here’s the secret, in between, we need others as well’ – Morrie Schwarz

One of the little rituals we have at the Baby in Mind office, is to stop at U&Co Café each day. The coffee shop is located, along with half-a-dozen other businesses, at my local neighbourhood shops, just a few blocks from where I live. And while there is nothing particularly remarkable about stopping at a local coffee shop to fill up on caffeine, there is something very remarkable about U&Co which – sadly – also seems out of place in today’s world.

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Essential Books About Infant Touch and Infant Massage

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Social touch between human beings has a profound impact on all areas of our lives, starting from birth when touch between parents and babies forms the basis of neurological regulation, social and brain development, our earliest social interactions and social learning. Social touch between parents and babies has the capacity to transform the possibilities for parent-baby relationships and, in turn, to expand and transform our relationships with all people. If we are serious about supporting healthy, human development, we need to understand the importance of the way that touch mediates the earliest experiences parents and babies have with each other. Here are our top ‘must-read books’ for parents and workers alike interested in infant massage and how touch creates who we are.

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Response to ‘How neuroparenting is sapping the joy out of life’ by Jan Macvarish

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You may never have heard of Jan Macvarish – I hadn’t until I came across an article of hers published on The Conversation titled “How ‘neuroparenting’ is sapping the joy out of family life’. The article does not paint a positive picture of neuroscience-informed policy and pokes fun at the use of “baby massage” as an intervention to support early childhood development. Read More

Five Year Accreditation Granted to Infant Massage Course

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Parents are often surprised to know that the majority of people who teach infant massage programs in Australia have only completed “hobby” or non-vocational courses in how to do infant massage or – in many cases – no training in infant massage whatsoever. However, in November, the Australian Government (via the Australian Skills Quality Authority)  re-accredited the National Competency Standards relating to the delivery of infant massage education.

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Prison bonds…of a different kind.

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Joanne Mulcahy is a Family Support Coordinator at the UK-based organisation, Prison Advice and Care Trust. Joanne is also trained to deliver a parent-baby program (known here in Australia as The First Touch Program). In an article originally published by IAIM-UK, Joanne writes:

It is difficult enough being a new parent without the stress of the dad being in prison. Mothers are coping alone at home – with the help of family and friends if lucky. In prison, dads are not able to do anything to help, have no chance of bonding with their new baby, and no chance to see important milestones…With up to 435 men at Swansea [a medium-security] prison there are quite a number of young men whose babies are born while they are inside.

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