News > International Day of The Midwife 2017

"Midwives, Mothers, and Families: Partners For Life"

Media Release

3 May 2017

The theme for International Midwives Day could not be more appropriate for the midwifery profession in New Zealand, and the maternity model that our midwives spearhead.

Partnership is a key concept with midwives working in partnership with a woman and her family or whanau, in a relationship of trust, shared decision making and responsibility, negotiation and shared understanding.

It’s been a roller-coaster last 18 months for the profession and the professional membership organisation, the NZ College of Midwives .The College is still in mediation with the Government over pay equity however Chief Executive, Karen Guilliland, and Canterbury Westland Regional Chair, Violet Clapham say Friday is all about celebrating New Zealand’s world-leading model of maternity care, our midwives, mothers and families.

“The word midwife means “with woman” and of course that’s what midwives do, they accompany a woman on her journey through pregnancy and childbirth into motherhood. We so often hear of women having the same midwife for all of their children so in fact, the relationship can stretch across many years,” says Violet Clapham.

“I love my job, and I feel very privileged to share in the amazing life journey that is the birth of a child. A key focus for me is to spend time building a relationship with women, so I can support them well with each unique childbirth journey,” she says.

Karen Guilliland adds that another important partnership to keep in mind is the one between midwives themselves.

“By sharing experiences and friendships, midwives add to the knowledge that makes them the health professionals they are,” she says. “Not only do local midwives remain friends and colleagues for many years, but nationally and overseas as well. We all want to learn, we all love what we do and we love sharing in the positive experiences of our colleagues.”

A morning tea will be held in Christchurch at the NZCOM National Office, NZCOM House at 376 Manchester Street, 1030am – 1130am, this Friday 5th May. Mums, families, midwives and supporters will be in attendance. Local regional chair Violet Clapham will address guests.

NZCOM’s Chief Executive Karen Guilliland, with a number of guests, will attend a morning tea at 11am on the lawns of Parliament. This has been organised by Emily Writes (“The Spin Off”) who penned this marvellous article recently and this equally stunning piece


For more information please contact: Ali Jones, ph 027 247 3112 or Maria Scott, NZ College of Midwives on 021 329 405.