Tara Atkins has been an inspiration for her support for young mums in Hedland, helping them overcome potential isolation and a lack of extended family support.
Tara is the perfect example of a Local Leader – someone who steps up and does something about a problem instead of complaining about it. In this case the problem was the lack of community-based support structures for new mothers and their babies.
Tara has lived in Hedland for 12 years and her three children were all born here. She has always been community-oriented but when her third child was born in early 2020 she discovered that the new mums support structures she was familiar with no longer existed. This was a big problem in a community where many young families are in the community for only a short period and often don’t have family support.
So she approached the Hedland Well Women’s Centre and worked to establish the Adjusting to Babyhood group with their backing. The group has been an instant success, with about 100 new mothers getting involved in its first year, three-quarters of them first-time mums. It has proved its worth during the period of COVID-19 restrictions when this sort of local support became even more vital.
Adjusting to Babyhood provides a welcoming and supportive space for new mums, with weekly morning tea meetings enabling them to connect with each other and get access to information from regular guest speakers and services through the Well Women’s Centre as they adjust to this big life change. Topics covered include nutrition for mums and bubs, pelvic floor exercises, baby massage and more.
Already the group has helped women build friendships and networks that have extended beyond the weekly meetings.
Even as Tara’s son gets older (he recently turned one) she has maintained her involvement in the group and is a strong advocate for the work of the Hedland Well Women’s Centre.
She is a worthy addition to our ranks of Local Leaders whose efforts help to make Hedland a better place to live.
On behalf of all the new parents in the community, we thank you Tara!