Mayoral candidate George Harvie, with his Achieving for Delta slate, is promising to restore the post-natal BabyDaze program if elected.
In a news release, Harvie said he plans to bring back the nurse-led program as soon as the spring of 2019. The program was used as a Fraser Health resource for new parents with children less than eight months old before it was cancelled.
“I’ve talked to many young families affected by the cancellation of the BabyDaze program who feel abandoned in seeking post-natal support here at home,” Harvie said in the release. “When you’re a new parent, a bridge or tunnel is too far to travel to get the help you need in raising a happy and healthy baby.”
Harvie’s planning to work with Delta staff to bring local access to a public health nurse on a weekly basis so they can offer services like infant weight monitoring and breastfeeding support. The nurse will also be able to connect residents to other community resources.
Harvie said Erica Beard, a nurse, Achieving for Delta school board candidate and new mom, has been a “fierce advocate” for the BabyDaze program.
“By bringing back a public health nurse to Delta on a weekly basis, young parents like me won’t have to face the unknown alone,” she said in the release. “They’ll receive much-needed support on everything from nutrition, to sun and winter safety, screen time, anxiety and postpartum depression.”
The program would operate as part of the city’s parks, recreation and culture department, who would be responsible for reviewing and refining the program to better meet the needs of the community.
“Not only is this program an important health resource, it’s a safe place to discuss fears and celebrate successes,” Beard added. “Being a new parent can be incredibly isolating, and the BabyDaze program allows parents to get out of the house to enjoy social time with our children with other parents.”
The Delta civic election takes place on Oct. 20.