Families with newborn babies through to toddlers will have access to a new sleep and settling service through the Maternal Child Health Service, thanks to State Government funding secured by Council.
Mayor Mark Holcombe said the funding has been well received. “Recent trends have shown that a significant amount of families using our Maternal Child Health Service are challenged with sleep and settling.
“I am pleased we have been able to source and secure the $10,567 grant, and deliver much needed support to new parents and families locally.” he said.
Michelle Meyer, Coordinator Maternal Child Health Services said the initiative recognises the importance of sleep for a child’s long term development, as well as the wellbeing of families within the community.
“Council will be able to offer this services rather than families having to travel outside of the Mansfield Shire, sometimes as far as Melbourne”.
Local parents Jess and Gareth MacDonald had ongoing difficulties with their son’s sleep from when he was a newborn baby. “We tried different strategies for months and months, then became so sleep deprived and desperate, so asked our Maternal Child Health Nurse for advice.
“The best option for us was for Jess and the baby to pack up and stay at a sleep school facility in Melbourne for a week, which we had to wait 6 months to get into, and was really tough because we were separated as a family. If there is support available here in Mansfield, families will probably seek help sooner because it’ll be much more accessible, plus both parents can learn the skills needed to help babes sleep.” Jess and Gareth said.
The service will be available from April this year and will offer:
Sleep and settling information sessions for parents of newborns (first time parents), babies aged 6-9 months old and Toddlers aged 18 months to 2 years old.
A sleep and settling outreach service for vulnerable families in their own homes.
For further information contact the Mansfield Shire Council Maternal Child Health Service on 5775 8537.