So.... Why were you in Sweden?
I've had a few people ask me this week what Sweden was all about, and how I ended up there. This week I had the privilege of visiting BabyBjorn in Sweden, and delivering some workshops to their staff. It was wonderful and I'll write more about that another time.
But for today I thought I'd share a little about some of the wider work I love doing as part of Close and Calm.
Local Support, Writing Articles, Carrier Sales and Hires.
Primarily I work locally with parents, helping them to find the carrier that best suits them and their families. I also work at the Neonatal Unit every Thursday, helping to promote Kangaroo Care, making it as comfortable as possible for the parents and babies.
I also love to work with carrier manufacturers themselves, and the wider Baby Carrying world. I love to write, and write articles for my website, for other websites and blogs, and for you too!
I often write for Oscha Slings: https://www.oschaslings.com/blog probably more than I do here, and am currently in the process of writing an article in collaboration with the local Neonatal Unit which I'm really enjoying. I do have a soft spot for Oscha Slings, they are not only our local Scottish Carrier Manufacturer, but more than that I love their ethics, and am really proud to work with them.
Impact the local and wider Community.
Close and Calm's vision is to impact the community with the benefits of carrying, to make carrying a mainstream occurrence. It is a vision to see Post Natal Depression reduced, babies’ settled, and community built as people are more free and able to venture out. We want to see calm restored to the homes of newborns – and parenting becoming an exciting and encouraging period, instead of one of concern, loneliness and isolation. Through our grass roots connections with parents, caregivers, manufacturers and healthcare practitioners, we want to set the foundation for our local community, in normalising the safe and regular use of carriers. That is why when I heard about the Baby Box Wrap I worked with the Scottish Government for the inclusion of the TICKS safety guidelines.
I don't make carriers! I do deliver feedback.
People often ask me if I make carriers, and I don't at the moment, no (crafting skills are not on my CV!). I do however have a real interest in how carriers are made and product development, specifically in how they work for you as parents. I have over 150 carriers now, and some of the feedback is consistent amongst those of you who try them on....
Do they make a more lightweight one?
Is there an easier way to put this on?
I don't understand the instructions on this bit?
Product Development - Building Safer, Simpler, Comfier Carriers for the future.
I see part of my role (as a carrying consultant) is to let the manufacturers know what bits you find difficult, or wish were simpler / comfier and so often feed these things back to manufacturers directly.
One carrier will never be 'the best' as I'm so often asked, it really does depend on many things, your body shape, your baby's body shape, what you intend on using it for, whether you like padded, or minimal padding, fabric or buckles or both, but regardless, if I can help manufacturers hear from you, and improve their designs - it's a win for me, for you and for the parents to come :)
As a Born to Carry Trainer, I offer Peer Supporter Courses, enabling people to become fully qualified and insured Peer Supporters. I also run courses at the local hospital training staff, and can deliver bespoke training to companies as required.
I hope that helps explain what I do, please do ask me more questions!