We are so excited to be here representing the parents and soon-to-be parents of Oxfordshire! We are here to ensure your feedback is delivered to the entire committee at our meetings (held four times a year at the John Radcliffe) and that improvements are made to the already brilliant service that Oxfordshire Maternity Services delivers.
Want to know more about us? Read below!
“My name is Louise and I am a post-natal doula, wife to a wife 🌈, and mother to my son. I am thrilled to be chair of this group because I am passionate about birthing women and people’s experiences in the antenatal, perinatal and postnatal period. I believe in supporting families to have the most positive experience possible by helping them to access the best, and most appropriate services for them and their babies, and enabling them to make informed decisions about and be in control of their care.
Before having my son I worked for 10 years in the nature conservation charity sector, working to improve local nature reserves for wildlife as well as engaging the public with the wildlife of the UK. I love walking and being outdoors, especially with my son in tow!”
Social Media Secretary
“Hi, I’m a primary school teacher and have an almost 2 year old and another on the way in October. I wanted to be involved with OMVP as I think it’s such a useful and valuable service. It’s so important those who have used the maternity service have an opportunity to share their experiences and give feedback and OMVP provides that opportunity and works hard to help improve services. Particular areas of interest for me are antenatal care and the information given during this time, post natal care including mental health and feeding experiences. I’m loving being involved with this service and have seen its huge value in supporting people, especially during these strange times.”
Bereavement Pathway User Rep
“I joined the OMVP as Co-Chair whilst on maternity leave in April 2019. I stepped down in August 2020 to take on a new role as a primary headteacher but remain as a rep with a special interest in the bereavement and pregnancy after loss pathways after the death of our son Edward in 2017 and birth of George in 2018.
It is a real privilege to be on a team with such a brilliant group of people from wide and varied backgrounds.”
Rep for north of the county
I’m a mother to a 2 year old with another little one on the way. Following the birth of my daughter, I became very intrigued by the entire process of welcoming new humans to the world.
Having a baby is such an important time for mothers and their family and unfortunately not all experiences through the journey are positive. I am thrilled to have joined the OMVP and I’m very motivated to help remove barriers that make it difficult for families to have the positive experience they all deserve and to help bring about changes based on lived experience that will make a real difference to all families using the maternity services during this exciting and precious time.
In particular, I am extremely passionate about empowering mothers and their families to make informed choices for themselves and their family and to work with their caregivers to help them achieve a positive labour and birth experience.
“I have lived in Oxfordshire for 6 years and currently work in a GPs surgery part time. I moved here from London and I am used to be very busy! That’s why when the post of Vice-Chair of the MVP came up when my daughter was 9 months, I jumped at applying for it. Hayley and Louise really are the dream team to work with – I feel so lucky to be involved in something as exciting and positive as the MVP. The midwives, doctors, health care professionals and volunteers are such an inspiring and hard working group of people and I am thrilled to be part of such a dynamic group of people.
My husband and I had a difficult road to having our daughter (born in the John Radcliffe after a long but exciting 48 hour labour) with three early miscarriages, and I also had a nasty bout of post-natal depression when she turned one. We are so lucky to live in Oxfordshire where we have access to some of the best maternity and post-natal care in the country and I was very keen to use my experiences positively and help other women and their families to access more support and care and to help improve services further. I have a specific interest in improving access to care and support for families experiencing baby loss and improving access to breast feeding and feeding support in the county.”
“Having personally benefited from the resources provided by the OMVP during my first pregnancy in the initial lockdown in March 2020, when I saw the treasurer role being advertised I applied hoping I’d be able to use my qualification as a chartered accountant to give something back.
I gave birth in October 2020 to my daughter, now on maternity leave from being an auditor (we’re not all bad – honest!) it is great to be part of the wonderful OMVP team helping & supporting Oxfordshire families!”
Lesley- Antenatal/Postnatal Care Inpatient Rep
Last year we welcomed our beautiful baby girl. Although we were over the moon at her safe arrival, we carried the affects of an unexpected turn in my health far into our postpartum journey. Due to my antenatal health concerns, we made several trips to the JR and shortly before our baby’s birth, I was admitted to the hospital. I subsequently spent a couple of nights on the delivery suite after her arrival. Experiencing pregnancy as first time parents against the backdrop of a pandemic, had its challenges, but we were very grateful for the resources offered through the OMVP. Devouring the weekly infant feeding and “ask the midwife sessions” were some of the many ways we prepared ourselves for the arrival of our little one. So, when the Inpatient antenatal and postnatal rep position was advertised, I jumped at the opportunity to be able to get involved and represent all families’ experiences with a special emphasis on reaching and representing those who are often underrepresented and/or overlooked and supporting them to feel heard and seen.
When I am not tending to the needs of a little one, you will find me supporting individuals and families as they navigate pregnancy, birth and the postpartum journey. As a birth and postnatal doula I value the opportunity to help parents to feel heard, supported and empowered to make informed choices.
“I am mum to a 2 year old boy and a 3 month old girl and am currently on maternity leave from my job as a Commercial and Agricultural Property Solicitor. I moved to the county recently and my baby girl was born here at the height of lock down!
I was keen to get involved because I have seen how bad maternity care can be and also seen how good it can be. I know the long term impact that both can have on women both physically and emotionally. Having seen both sides of the coin I feel I have a lot to contribute and so was keen to get involved! I have particular interests in breastfeeding and home births.”
“I started volunteering with OMVP after I saw the advert on Facebook and thought “I could do that! I’m passionate about birth choices and want to improve what we already have!”
OMVP were very visible during my second pregnancy and I felt very supported by all the information they were sharing.
I am an editor with a background in mathematics and feel very at home with medical jargon and statistics. I did a lot of birth research during my second pregnancy so the Intrapartum representative role really appealed to me and I felt like my skills were a good fit.
To anyone thinking about volunteering I would say “Do it!””
Perinatal Mental Health rep
“My children are a bit older (nearly 7 and 9 now), and the OMVP sadly wasn’t around when they were born. I was so pleased to hear that the amazing team of co-chairs had resurrected it a few years later, and I jumped at the chance to join the diverse and committed team of volunteer service user reps. As a perinatal clinical psychologist and birth doula, the mental health of parents and infants is my passion, and I represent the OMVP in relation to perinatal mental health services. These are growing and changing rapidly in Oxfordshire; it’s so important that the voices of maternity service users help to shape care pathways, and I’m proud to be part of the OMVP team working hard to make this happen.”
Who else comes to meetings?
Representation is offered from the vast spectrum of the NHS as well as MVP volunteers. Usually attending meetings are:
- The Co-chairs and Vice chair of the committee
- The Head of midwifery
- One or more Consultant midwives
- Better Births Consultant midwife
- GP representative
- Obstetric representative
- One or more members of the Oxfordshire CCG
- Volunteer representation
- Student midwife representative
- Health Visitor Representative