The Black River Hospital in St. Elizabeth has launched the New B.I.R.T.H. (Beginning In Restoring Trust and Hope) Mentorship Programme, designed to mentor and touch the life of a child born on one’s birthday.
Inservice Education Nurse at the BRH, Dorcia Brown-Lyle who conceptualized the programme, explained that the initiative will allow persons to give back to a child born on their birthday in simple ways.
“This might sound simple but it involves touching another life. You may give a simple gift like gift baskets, gift certificates, books to encourage literacy or if you are pressed to do an education fund for a child, you may also do that as you are not limited in what you do. The initiative involves touching the life of another person who was born on your special day” Nurse Brown-Lyle said.
She added that the programme will begin among employees at the BRH, who have been encouraged to provide support for teenage mothers; encourage exclusive breastfeeding for infants for the first six months of life and also encourage parents to visit health centres or private practitioners for follow-up care for infants.
Persons who are interested in participating in the programme can dialogue with the nurse managers at public hospitals in Clarendon, Manchester and St. Elizabeth and decide the role they would like to play in the child’s life.
For SRHA Regional Director, Michael Bent, the programme is a welcomed one, given what is happening in today’s society.
“This will be a wonderful programme because we are in a society where there is so much despair and lack of trust, not just in adults, but in family members. Children are losing trust of their parents; parents losing hope in their children, its everywhere and we are seeing it manifested so often in the antisocial behaviours around the country. I want to commend you Nurse Brown-Lyle for a wonderful initiative and what a better place to start than at birth. Before they get any exposure anywhere that young child has the support; that mother who may not have any support from other family members and that father who may be hopeless and confused will have the support of the hospital. Someone will be there to say I am restoring hope in this child because we are here to mentor him or her throughout their life” Mr. Bent said.
Mr. Bent added that he hopes the programme will be spread throughout the country to become transformative in the lives of many families.
Meanwhile, the Inservice Education Department used the opportunity to hand over items to the hospital, purchased from their fundraising activities. The department purchased a centrifuge for the hospital’s laboratory, valued at more than J $400, 000.00. The department has donated more than one million in equipment and supplies to the hospital.