stamps-for-mission

The Birthing Kit program has been supported by the Lutheran Women of Australia for many years and continues to be supported with great interest. Back in 2003, Sister Margaret Voigt who was a missionary in Papua New Guinea (PNG) for many years, presented an idea to the Lutheran Women at their General Synod of supplying birthing kits to the village birth attendants. The Lutheran Women where very interested in helping in this way and since then thousands of kits have been made and sent to PNG. The birthing kits are shipped from the Lutheran Church of Australia’s National Office to Lae. The Overseas Affairs Office clears the supplies from customs and then sends them onto Lutheran Health Services and they then send them out to various places where Lutheran Health Services work. The kits are for the use of the village midwives when they attend deliveries but are also used in Aid Posts and small Health Centres where they lack a good labour ward.

Preparing Birthing Kits

If you would like to join in God’s mission in this way, please forward assembled kits to LCA International Mission: 197 Archer Street, North Adelaide, South Australia, 5006.

The assembled kits should include the following: Download the Birthing Kit contents list.

1 metre square of plastic 1 metre square of old linen 2 cloth nappies (not disposable) which may be second hand or made of flannelette material (60cm x 60cm)
2 x safety/nappy pins 1 face washer or 6-10 pieces of
15 cm x 25 cm old linen to be used as wipes for mother and baby
2 x 20-25cm pieces of 15 mm wide ribbon
or 2 x 20-25cm pieces of 15 mm tape
2 x disposable gloves normal size cake of soap newborn size singlet
pack items in a press seal or zip-lock (27cm x 33cm) plastic bag
to keep items clean and dry
tract from LLL can be added completed kit

Need more inspiration?

Read these stories about the difference the Birthing Kits are making in God’s mission.

Birthing Kits Deliver Care To PNG Sisters

Lutheran Health Services PNG

From Your Kitchen Table To The Mountains

The Joyous Job At Hand

Village Birthing Kits Are In Use

Alternative Baby Shower

As an alternative to a baby shower, why not use this time to prepare birthing kits for mothers who do not have the luxury of giving birth in a well-equipped hospital with trained staff.

Advice for running the event:
a) Provide a list of the items you need for the kits with your invitations. Please use this template if needed
b) Ask people to let you know what they are bringing for the kits when they RSVP. Let people know which stores stock items such as cloth nappies.
c) Some people may prefer to donate money that you can use to buy any items you are short of in the lead up to the event or as a donation for the shipping costs. Some items are cheaper to buy in bulk (cotton tape, nappy pins) so you could suggest guests pool their money to buy those items online. 
d) A venue with long trestle tables works well for the event. A lot of room is needed to make the kits, especially for people to cut up the linen/plastic. A church hall is a useful location for this reason.
e) Light refreshments on a separate table help to sustain the guests while they are packing the kits.
f) Make signs for the tables with instructions for putting the kits together. Please use this template if needed
g) Set up stations on trestle tables for cutting the fabric (with fabric scissors, tape measures), cutting the plastic and cutting the cord ties.
h) You could also have a station for people to put small items (eg nappy pins, gloves and cord ties) into a small zip lock bag. This is a task that people with poor mobility could do while sitting down.
i) Ask people to put their items in the designated areas on the tables when they arrive. Before you start packing, count how many of each item you have so that you know how many full packs are able to be made.  
j) Create a production line on 2 trestle tables so guests can walk along and add items to their kits.
k) Make an example kit for guests to see what it needs to look like.
l) Provide a checklist at the end of the production line with a few people responsible for checking the kits to be certain everything is in them, and then sitting on the bags to squeeze out as much air as possible. 
m) Have a whiteboard at the end of the line, with a tally of how many completed packs have been made. It is encouraging for everyone to see their progress and a total is then on the board at the end.  
n) Have sturdy freight boxes at the end of the production line to help transport the packs. Assign someone the task of making sure the boxes are properly packed.

 

Need more inspiration?

Read this story about Emily’s baby shower.