A PREGNANCY and birth wellbeing expo in Wodonga aims to empower prospective parents on the Border.
Eleven practitioners will speak on topics ranging from hypnobirthing to acupuncture and placenta encapsulation on Saturday.
Hypnobirthing Australia practitioner and childbirth educator Sophie Lynch and Albury-Wodonga Midwifery Services independent midwife Barbara Roberts will host the first event of its kind at the Border College of Natural Therapies.
Having started Let’s Hypnobirth Baby`on the Border in September, Ms Lynch said she was passionate about empowering women to birth without fear.
Ms Lynch, who delivered her two children using hypnobirthing techniques such as relaxation, visualisation, self-hypnosis and breathing, wanted women on the Border to have positive birth experiences.
“I’m preparing women to calmly meet whatever turn their birth takes,” she said.
“From first-hand experience I know in my heart what an amazing technique it is.”
Together with Ms Roberts, Ms Lynch said they wanted to empower women by giving them information about the choices available to help prepare them for birth on the Border.
“There are lots of synergies between hypnobirthing and independent midwife care,” she said.
“We really wanted to collaborate on this expo because Albury-Wodonga is really well serviced by a great range of complementary health practitioners.”
A midwife for 20 years, Ms Roberts became the first independent midwife on the Border in January 2015.
Ms Roberts, who cares for women throughout their pregnancy, during the birth and six weeks post-birth, delivered 26 babies in 2015 and has 38 already booked for 2016.
“To build a rapport with your midwife throughout your pregnancy is second-to-none,” she said.
Other presenters at the expo include Karen Hedrick and David Thorpe, Bowen Therapy and pregnancy massage, Border Natural Therapies; Dr Thanuja Vanderhoek, osteopath, Albury Integrated Health; Dr Simone O’Connor, physiotherapist, Birth and Bub Fit Physiotherapy; Dr Becki Milani, Chinese Medicine general practitioner, Indigo Chinese Medicine; Mandy Byrne, kinesiologist; Natasha Russell, physiotherapist, Mothers Moving Well; Morgan Hick, doula, Albury Wodonga Doula Service; Maree Petrow, yoga teacher, The Space and Albury Integrated Health; and Bec Quinliven, Albury Float Room.
Each practitioner will talk about their service before attendees share an afternoon tea.
The Albury-Wodonga Pregnancy and Birth Wellbeing Afternoon will be held on Saturday, May 7, at 24 Brockley Street, from 1pm until 4pm.
Entry is free and participants will receive a gift bag with vouchers valued at up to $250.
For more information phone 0478 313 191.