Spring 2015 Issue

Learning Baby Basics

By Erin Zagursky

Illustration by Mona Daly

The William & Mary Healthy Beginnings Project (WMHBP) has received a $12,000, one-year grant from the March of Dimes to offer Baby Basics Moms Clubs to pregnant, incarcerated women. The new clubs, which will be established in Henrico Jail, Riverside Regional Jail and Hampton Roads Regional Jail, will offer participants a chance to learn in a group setting about a variety of topics, including nutrition and relationships. The clubs supported by WMHBP will be the first offered in Virginia jails. The March of Dimes grant builds on work that WMHBP has been doing since 2012, providing pregnancy tests, prenatal vitamins, nutritional counseling, referrals and postpartum support to women in jails throughout southeast Virginia. The Baby Basics Moms Club, led by trained facilitators, will offer WMHBP participants a more inclusive educational curriculum, focusing on six core areas: safe sleep, pre-term births, nutrition, depression, relationships and substance abuse. Participants will also receive information about financial health and regional services, such as the Women, Infants and Children Program (WIC) and Medicaid.