Postpartum Support Charleston is launching a new program aimed at providing new moms in the Charleston area with basic necessities and support as they head home from the hospital with their infant.
Beyond Delivery launches Oct. 1 in a pilot program with Summerville Medical Center. The first delivery will be made on Oct. 16. New moms can learn more and register for the program at www.ppdsupport.org/beyond-delivery.
Postpartum Support Charleston is thrilled to partner with Summerville Medical Center, which has been a long-time supporter of Postpartum Support Charleston’s work supporting new moms struggling with a maternal mental illness, such as postpartum depression or anxiety.
For almost 30 years, Summerville Medical Center has committed to serving moms and babies with high-quality care close to home. The hospital delivers more than 2,800 babies each year and is one of the largest obstetric programs in South Carolina. In recent years, Summerville Medical Center has opened a new women’s and neonatal tower with 30 private postpartum rooms, 12 labor and delivery rooms, 16-bed Level II Special Care Nursery, high-risk obstetric Maternal Fetal Medicine Clinic, and a roster of board-certified physicians specializing in women’s care.
Through the Beyond Delivery program, moms who are discharged from Summerville Medical Center will receive a homemade lasagna, an infant care package with diapers, wipes and butt paste as well as materials about maternal mental health and resources provided by Postpartum Support Charleston. All moms who give birth at Summerville Medical Center are eligible for Beyond Delivery.
“Each day it is an honor to care for expecting moms and their families during the pregnancy journey and beyond,” said Donna Riordan, AVP of Women’s & Children’s Services at Summerville Medical Center. “Maternal mental illness is a critical issue in our community. We are proud to partner with Postpartum Support Charleston to continue caring for new moms after they go home, and to shine a light on the resources and support system available to help mom get back to her active life.”
An estimated 1 in 5 new moms will suffer from a maternal mental illness. In the Charleston tri-county area, that means about 2,000 moms every year will suffer. Lack of basic infant necessities such as diapers and poor social support are risk factors to a new mom. Through this free community program Postpartum Support Charleston aims to alleviate some of these risk factors with care packages and its peer support services.
“Having a new baby can be so overwhelming to a first-time mom, but when you add in a lack of social support and in many cases lack of access to basic necessities, such as diapers, it compounds the situation with more stress and worry,” said Elaine DeaKyne, executive director of Postpartum Support Charleston. “That’s why we’re so excited to launch Beyond Delivery. We want to provide a warm outreach to moms while also allowing us to provide educational materials and support for moms who may be suffering from a maternal mental illness.”
Postpartum Support Charleston received a $5,000 Community Engagement Grant from Postpartum Support International to help fund the launch of the Beyond Delivery program. The grant was awarded to innovative programs that address disparities, bridge gaps in care, or address financial and socioeconomic needs.
Other organizations supporting the program launch are Martin Luther Lutheran Church on James Island, which is offering use of its kitchen for storing prepared meals, and Lasagna Love, which will help coordinate the lasagna preparation with Charleston area volunteer chefs.
In 2022, Postpartum Support Charleston plans to expand Beyond Delivery to other hospitals in the Charleston region.
Anyone can donate to the program or shop an Amazon wishlist of lasagna ingredients and diapers. Learn how to support Beyond Delivery at www.ppdsupport.org/beyond-delivery.