American Friends of Whistler made a recent donation to the Birth, Baby and Beyond program held through Whistler Community Services Society.Following is a report from the program director:In less than four years the program has become very successful and continues to respond to the growing demand in Whistler for post natal care and support. We initially started in 2014 running 2 sessions a year which are 8 weeks in length, To meet the growing demand we are currently running 5 sessions of 8 week programming. All groups are at capacity with participants and we also generate a wait list.The program is unique as it is designed to support women in their postpartum adjustment and reduce the risks of depression and anxiety after having a baby. It is facilitated by Clinical Counsellor Candace Postal and Post- Partum Doula Julie Kennedy-Smith. This combination of mental health and medical support for Mom and Baby has assisted in developing meaningful relationships for moms who feel isolated living in a rural community and without the traditional extended family network of aunts, uncles and grandparents.Whistler families are also at greater risk for post- partum depression and a difficult transition as they give birth outside of this community in North Vancouver and Squamish. Also most of their prenatal care can be out of community with the midwifery program and expanded obstetric care in Squamish.
Thank you to the American Friends of Whistler for this donation. It truly is supporting our growing community.With warmth,JackieTestimonial:“Thank you to Whistler Community Services and AFOW for offering such a great program. Candice and Julie provided such a warm welcoming environment for a group of new moms. Their knowledge as health care professionals is great, but it was their sharing of personal experiences that truly helped me realize that many of the emotions and frustrations I feel are not only normal, but common.After difficulty getting pregnant, medical anomalies during my pregnancy, and having to quit breast feeding, I was struggling as a first time mom; the Birth, Baby and Beyond program has truly helped me move forward with my baby boy.”
Our mission is to enhance the Whistler community and foster greater understanding and friendship between Canadians and Americans. Starting as a registered U.S. 501(c)(3), we raised and distributed funds focussed toward health and human services, culture and the arts, and the environment and outdoor recreation. Since 2019, we have transitioned to facilitating direct charitable giving.