Thursday, December 11, 2008

Birth Center friendraiser update - we have work to do!

Last night, moms, one lovely family and supporters attended a “friendraiser” for the new Birth Center. Plans for opening the new site near RiverBend in August 2009 were reviewed and discussed. While a lot remains to be done, it's fair to say the new birth center will be worthy of our community.

Features of the new birth center
Features include two birth rooms with Jacuzzi tubs making waterbirth an option. A hybrid room will serve as a third birth room when needed. Appropriate space for the well-baby clinic and educational programs as well as office space for the midwives, staff and the in-house lab is included. Right now, office work, lab work and lunch breaks all occur in the current site's kitchen all while moms and babies stream in and out! Perhaps one of new birth center's loveliest features is its location amidst a grove of well established fir trees through which a walking path will be created.

Site plans were recently approved by the City of Springfield. Stay tuned for news of permit pulling.

Fundraising update
In the past year and a half, approximately 40% of the capital campaign goal of $750,000 has been raised. Campaign funds combined with the estimated $400,000 sale of the present site will provide the $1,150,000 needed to build the new birth center. 100% of the Birth Center staff have already pledged or contributed.

Take nothing for granted
Of course, no one, including PeaceHealth, is immune to the effects of the current economy. As priorities are re-examined from the kitchen table to the board room, it's unrealistic to assume the Birth Center will become a reality without vigorous, united community support. This is especially important given more than half of the campaign goal remains to be met. What can we do to ensure the future of our freestanding Birth Center?
  1. Everyone who supports the Birth Center and wants to see the new one built can write a letter of support. Explain why this option was important to you and your family. Emphasize how it reflects your needs and interests and those of other women in the community. Ask husbands, partners and grandparents to write letters, too! Email your letter to and, if you like, post it here to inspire the rest of us to get going! Letters will be shared with individuals and decision-making bodies in a position to positively affect plans for the new birth center.
  2. Make a gift to the Birth Center campaign – no amount is insignificant. Gifts of $5 and $10 demonstrate breadth of community support and they do add up. Click here and select "Birth Center Campaign."
  3. If you would like to be involved in coordinating community support, send an email.

A closing thought…..

Last night's friendraiser was originally scheduled over at RiverBend before being moved to the Birth Center. Things have a way of working out as everyone seemed genuinely pleased to have a reason to linger in the Birth Center living room once again. Certainly, memories of prenatal and well-baby visits floated through more than one person's thoughts during the course of the evening. No doubt, many women opting to receive prenatal care at the Birth Center treasure not only the arrival of their baby but the community of friends and wrap-around support they take with them into the future. In Parenting as a Spiritual Journey Nancy Fuchs-Kreimer's description of contemporary community building sums up the feeling in the room beautifully:
An old saying has it that a house is not a home until there has been a birth, a death, and a wedding in it. These days, few people live in the same home from birth to death, and even fewer are born at home, marry at home, or die there. Our communities become our homes. (page 48)
People who use the Birth Center come to see it as their community. In light of this, the enthusiasm and commitment to seeing it gracefully transition into its new location is not surprising. That said, it is exciting to watch!

1 comment:

  1. It was a great event! Thanks for all your hard work Katharine. I'll be working on my letter!