Many women facing homelessness have dependent children or are pregnant. They are often a hidden population, sofa surfing, in refuges and bed and breakfasts. Social service and asylum seeker accommodation are the temporary spaces where many women and children live for months and years on end. Surviving isolation, poverty and poor living conditions; the realities of homelessness for mothers is compounded by stress, fear and ongoing trauma.
Developing targeted support for mothers experiencing homelessness is essential to ensure the long-term wellbeing of and positive outcomes for women and their families.
This session will explore the experiences of pregnant women experiencing homelessness. Within maternity care there is an expectation that women have informal support. The term birth partner is synonymous with all aspects of intrapartum care, but the question remains: what about women who do not have birth partners? Pregnant women facing social adversity have a significantly increased risk of maternal mortality and maternal morbidity; this inequality in maternal health urgently needs to be addressed.
Inequalities extend to children experiencing homeless, with long term impacts on health and social outcomes. This session will feature originations providing targeted support, advocacy and a voice to women and children.
This session will be chaired by Emma Arran, Director, Solace Peer Support.