Personally, you might be thrilled, excited, keen to start this NZ midwife 2-year training and feel relieved something like this is now available or you might feel skeptical, critical, unbelieving and hope to prove The Concept wrong. Every willing midwife is accepted.

There are no hoops to jump through.

This NZ midwife 2-year training is open to all midwives without exception.

Reasons you might want to participate

  • Just feel tired and don’t have a clue how to change that.
  • Feel your clients are too dependent and want a stronger partnership.
  • Want more physiological births.
  • Want more home births

You might have other reasons – we’d love to hear them!

Getting the most out of this training

To get the most out of your participation in this training, you need to be willing to:

  • Give a specific Partnership message
  • Keep simple, clear notes of what skills-method each client uses
  • What skills they have learned from 24 weeks onward
  • How the skills were used
  • You can add your own reflection of the effectiveness of each skills-based method
  • Praise or encourage then debrief after each birth about ‘choices’ and ‘skills’
  • Make your notes and statistics available to NZCOM and other researchers who may use the data from the 2-year training for formal research.

Are you an independent/community midwife?

New Zealand midwives work within a proud autonomous professional organization

‘Midwives are autonomous practitioners regardless of the setting and are accountable to the woman and the midwifery profession for their midwifery practice’ 

Philosophy and Code of Ethics

This means each midwife who ‘chooses’ to participate is actually using this training to add to the data and information about her own practice. This is good and bad … so to speak. At the same time, our Trust believes the 100-150 participants will clearly show that across the board there will be many positive changes for New Zealand’s midwives, families, and our society when it becomes natural and normal that all expectant parents (of course, there will be a small percent who do not) self-learn birth and birth-coaching skills they use during their baby’s birth.

The Good

  • Working with more skilled clients feels great, they feel great and tell their friends and relatives.
  • Like Andrea’s experience, you will see significant, positive changes in all aspects of pregnancy/birth for all concerned. After 2 years, Andrea gave a presentation of her success  Andrea’s 2002 Presentation Nelson DHB 

The Bad

  • New Zealand’s midwifery professional organization is not presently in partnership with Common Knowledge Trust’s 2-year training. We are aware this might create a sense of ‘conflict of interest’ because you support the philosophy and foundation of your profession yet personally want something to change
    • From the Strategic Plan 2017 to 2020  (see 2.3) 
      • NZCOM philosophically continues to focus on promoting one type and one place of birth
      • This training philosophically promotes birth satisfaction for the majority of birthing families independent of place, type or circumstances based on a skilled birthing population.

Are you a core midwife?

If you are a core midwife…

When a midwife hands over care or works alongside you: 

  • Ask each midwife if they are participating in this training
  • Ask the midwife to catch you up on the skills each woman has learned via her notes
  • Share the notated skills with the obstetrician so they can praise and encourage the use of skills
    • Praising the use of skills comforts families, shows them respect, ‘sees’ them and creates a functional, immediate partnership.

When you get to know the birthing woman

  • Ask whether they have self-learned skills
  • Ask how you can help both mother and father/other to use their skills
  • Praise mothers and fathers/others who appear to be using their skills
  • Add your notes about how the skills were used, benefits and other comments
  • Give feedback to the lead maternity carer about each woman’s ‘choices’ and ‘skills’

What clients need to know from their midwife

Learning, practicing and using birth and birth-coaching skills occurs ideally over a 16 week period from 24 weeks onward.

  • Midwives are the ideal conveyor of the message that grows a self-learning skilled birthing population.

Participating midwives can assure their clients that self-learning birth and birth-coaching does NOT require a Lifestyle change.

  • It’s infinitely easier to get people to learn birth and birth-coaching skills than any lifestyle change.

By participating in this training you’ll commit to leading your clients as Andrea has.

These are just three techniques:

  • Inspire those keen to ‘have something to do’ to choose which skills-method they will use. You’ll learn heaps from these families and they are your 20-30%
  • Encourage those who place regard in your professional advice to actually take your advice and choose one or more skills-methods and get stuck in. This group will surprise you as they surprise themselves. These are a further 50%
  • Educate those who trust in your professional skills and need extra confirmation that you actually want them to choose and use one/more skills-methods. This is the group you would like to do more for themselves. The last 20%

Further reading: 



Birthing Better skills were developed by moms and dads in the early 1970s in the US and used by many thousands globally in all types of birth. Birthing Better online birthing classes are housed in Common Knowledge Trust.

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