In praise of midwives: the 2018 Royal College of Midwives Midwifery Awards

This month we’re celebrating midwives everywhere in honour of the RCM Annual Midwifery Awards

Midwives have a hugely important role to play in the lives of new and expectant parents and mothers everywhere. If you’ve had a baby it’s likely that you’ll never forget your midwife.

To celebrate midwives and maternity support workers throughout the country, this month the Royal College of Midwives Midwifery Awards took place at a ceremony hosted by journalist, Good Morning Britain host and mum, Charlotte Hawkins.

The RCM Annual Midwifery Awards

Since 2004, the RCM Annual Midwifery Awards have rewarded, celebrated and shared outstanding achievement in midwifery across the UK. They recognise the best new evidence-based practice projects and the best in team working. They discover outstanding individuals making a difference for women, families and the newborn baby.

The awards aim to be a true reflection of excellence in midwifery and are designed to promote best practice and world-class midwifery standards, showcase practice innovations and ground-breaking initiatives and recognise both individual and team excellence.

The Pregnacare Student Midwife of the Year

This year Gemma Ford, a student midwife from Sheffield Hallam University, was named Pregnacare® Student Midwife of the Year.

The Pregnacare student midwife of the year award recognises an individual student midwife who makes an outstanding contribution to their future profession. This accolade is awarded to a student midwife who acts as an advocate for midwifery role model to other students.

Throughout her time at Sheffield Hallam University Gemma has been an ambassador for midwifery education and inspired and supported many students returning to university as well as first time entrants to midwifery courses. Gemma is also president of the current student midwifery society and earlier this year has devised and held collaborative learning events with medical students from other local universities to improve multi-disciplinary learning and training between midwives, obstetricians and gynaecologists.

Gill Walton Chief Executive and General Secretary at the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) said; “It’s truly inspiring to see student midwives like Gemma who are so dedicated and passionate about entering the midwifery profession and who encourage others to do the same.

“The work Gemma has also done to establish a strong midwifery society within the university that runs learning events that are relevant to the world that midwives practice in is so important. It’s also so imperative that we as midwives understand how vital good multi-disciplinary team work is in improving outcomes for both mother and baby and that is why its so fantastic to see student midwives such a Gemma organising learning around this area of maternity care.

I heartily congratulate Gemma on this achievement and thank her and her fellow midwifery students for their dedication, skill and commitment to learning as well as the care they show to mothers, babies and their families.”

Marie Forslund from Pregnacare said, “Gemma is being recognised as the Student Midwife of the Year for her commitment to multi-disciplinary learning and for supporting her fellow students. She has shown initiative through her ideas to improve her Trust’s homebirth rates, and has proactively encouraged feedback in the student midwife environment to improve the learning experience. Gemma has truly taken every opportunity to make a positive impact whilst studying to become a midwife.”

Helen Best, Acting Dean of the Faculty of Health and Wellbeing at Sheffield Hallam University said: “I’m delighted that Gemma has been recognised for her achievements, she is very deserving of the title of Student Midwife of the Year, and we are all very proud. Her passion and dedication to midwifery shows in all that she does, especially in her commitment to enriching the student midwife experience for the benefit of all of her peers.”

We will be hearing more from Gemma in the months to come, so stay tuned! Congratulations to Gemma and the other award winners, and a huge thanks to all midwives around the country for the fantastic work they do day-in, day-out, at such a pivotal moment in people’s lives.

If you're pregnant, make sure you read our midwife's advice on pregnancy and birth and our interview with Clemmie Hooper aka Mother of Daughters

Photos via: Redactive Events

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Alexandra Phillips

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