two women sillouettes holding hands up on beachRainbow Families will run the first antenatal class specifically designed for the LGBTIQ community.

When Kylie and Sahara* fell pregnant with their first baby, they attended the local hospital birthing class; whilst the information as helpful and staff friendly, the couple felt invisible. There was lots of talk about “hubbies” and “fathers”. Kylie as the non-biological mother was asked to join the “fathers” group. There were generalisations that just didn’t apply to them and they had questions they were uncomfortable to ask.

Similarly, Brendan and Johnnie were having a baby with the support of an altruistic surrogate, Brendan’s sister Juels. They were looking for a class where the three would be welcomed and included. If only there was a birthing class that was culturally sensitive to them all.

Well, now there is!

On Sunday February 26th, Rainbow Families will run the first Antenatal Class specifically designed for the LGBTIQ community.

In partnership with Rainbow Families, Midwife Educators Janet Broady and Andrew Lee have been developing this project for a number of months and are excited about presenting the class in an inclusive, safe environment for expectant LGBTIQ parents.

Broady explains that “The class is aimed at people expecting a baby in the next few months. It will cover pregnancy, birth and the postnatal period. It is an LGBTIQ focused, inclusive, alternative to the parenting education classes offered by hospitals.”

Rainbow Families’ Committee, Education Officer Justine Harris added, “Up until now the only option for LGBTIQ parents to be has been to attend mainstream antenatal classes. Lesbians, gays, involved donors and surrogates, trans and queer prospective parents will feel included.”

The class will present information that will help prepare you for the birth of your child in an environment where you are free to ask questions in a safe space that is knowledgeable about our families.

Co-chair Vanessa Gonzalez says, “In 2016 Rainbow Families surveyed community needs, and inclusive antenatal classes were identified as being high priority. We are really proud to be offering this to our community. This is the first class of its type!”

More Information:

What: Rainbow Families Antenatal Class

When: Sunday February 26, 10am-4:30pm

Where: Joseph Sargent Community Centre, Erskineville

Cost: $25


*Names have been changed for privacy but based on real experiences.