Pampering project at Wirral hospital

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Ronald Mcdonald House. Pic © Megan Tattersley JMU Journalism

Wirral’s Maternity Voices are on a mission to help women at Arrowe Park’s neonatal unit.

The NHS group invited volunteers to an open evening at Ronald McDonald House inside the Women and Children’s Hospital to talk about how they could organise their new project.

They want to help women at the intensive care unit by offering them a half-an-hour beauty treatment.

This is also designed to assist people who have to stay at the neonatal unit because they have ill or premature infants who need specialist care.

Last week, workers at the charity house and the chair of Wirral Maternity Voices explained what services families at the unit receive, what their life is like and how volunteers could help them during their difficult time.

YouTube: Megan Tattersley

Wirral Maternity Voices is an NHS group that works in the local community to give relevant feedback to the Clinic Commissioning Groups about services in the region.

Chair of the group, Victoria Walsh, told JMU Journalism: “Something as little as this can help, it allows these mothers to have someone they can speak to.”

Ms Walsh had experience first-hand of what it was like to be in the Ronald residence when she was living at the shared home when her son was ill two years ago.

“I remember not having time to do my own hair or anything for myself because all my time was focused on my baby,” she said.

The idea to offer a pamper session was from another member of the Wirral group. She witnessed a woman on the ward asking if someone could help blow dry her hair because after having a c-section, she could not move her arms high enough. This sparked the thought that other parents on the neonatal unit would be in a similar position and could benefit from a service that helped them with their beauty routine.

Kate Silcock, a mental health advocate and blogger, is eager to volunteer. The 34-year-old told JMU Journalism: “I want to try and give support and advice to woman who are going through such a challenging time.”

Susan Bowles, 41, also wants to volunteer. She told JMU Journalism: “I want to give people who can’t have a minute some time for themselves.”

For now, the treatments are being focused towards those at the neonatal unit, but there are plans to expand the services to other women in the maternity ward.

About Megan Tattersley, JMU Journalism