Whole woman care: Non-profit birth center planned

October 2017 Posted in Community, Your Health

By Melissa Wagoner

Lindsay Kinman has been dreaming one dream for a long time: opening a woman-centered, non-profit birth center in Silverton.

“I have been chewing over this dream for years,” she said. “The goal is to provide a safe place for any woman to come.”

Kinman has been working in childbirth for 15 years, first as a doula then, for the past 10 years, as a certified midwife. The mother of three says she fell into the line of work by chance after her second daughter, Ella, was born.

“I was the first one out of the group of friends who had kids and people started asking me to come to their births,” she said.

After attending several births Kinman learned about certified birth companions, or doulas.

“So there I was, like, ‘They’ll pay you to come to a birth?’” she laughed.

Kinman immediately signed up for courses through DONA International and later through the Midwives College of Utah earning her Bachelor of Science in Midwifery. She estimates to date she has caught over 200 babies.

“But I was saying that a couple of years ago,” she said.

Originally from Beaverton, Kinman met her husband, Chris Kinman, many years ago at Canyonview Camp. Coming full circle the couple moved to Silverton when Chris got a job as the associate director of the camp.

Now an active part of the community, Kinman sees a need for a non-profit birth center option in Silverton, which is nearly an hour drive from any similar center currently in operation.

“I just think it would be awesome for Silverton to have this,” Michelle Mulky, Kinman’s good friend, explained. “Right now if you were to look at a map there’s a hole right here.”

Mulky, Kinman’s first home delivery patient and an avid supporter of the birth center, is helping with planning and raising the $250,000 that will be required to open Believing in Birth Wellness Center.

“We’ll do bake sales if we have to,” Mulky said.

Mulky, owner of Ruby Rain Organics, a local skincare line, has six children and has experienced the full spectrum of delivery options; two hospital births, two at a birthing center and two at home.

“She’s the leading authority on all the things,” Kinman said.

Mulky who’s first birth at a hospital was not covered by insurance knows how expensive such an event can be.

“It was $10,000 for one day in the hospital,” she recalled.

Mulky and Kinman both feel like such prices can be a real burden on families and can heavily influence the choices parents make, which is why the non-profit and inclusive status of the center is so important to them.

Although Kinman says that statistically out-of-hospital births are a viable option for 85 percent of women, having given birth to all three of her children in a hospital she understands what it is like to be a part of that 15 percent.

“It’s not either, ‘I’m a good mom and I’m giving birth at home’ or ‘I’m a good mom and I’m giving birth in the hospital.’ Both are true,” she said.

In her opinion being educated about birth options is the vital factor.

“Me scaring a client about going to the hospital – what if they end up having to go to the hospital? I’m doing them a disservice,” she explained. “The thing is to provide support and education for moms who are not a good candidate for an out-of-hospital birth.”

This tenet of education is an important quality in Kinman’s midwifery practice and will be just as key at Believing in Birth Wellness Center as well. Already she is contracting with nutrition consultants, social workers, counselors, lactation consultants and doulas to assist with patient care.

“The nutrition support is huge,”
Mulky said.

The center’s midwives will also offer lengthy appointments in which clients will be encouraged to ask questions.

“You can’t in 15 minutes address the needs of a mother,” Kinman said. “We have a personal relationship by the end of this. You know who’s going to be at your delivery.”

Another important aspect of the center will be its location.

“The goal right now is that we’re working with Saint Edward’s to come to an agreement,” Kinman said. “Our hope is to be up and running by March.”

The church is in an ideal location, across the street from Silverton Hospital and with room for two birthing suites, a clinic room and a counseling room. Because of its proximity to the hospital and because Kinman’s goal is to make hospital transfers as seamless as possible, she and nurse midwife Molly MacMorris started a group last year called Common Grounds which brings in-hospital and out-of-hospital midwives together. 

“We get together and get to know each other,” Kinman explained. “Collaboration only helps.”

In this same spirit of teamwork Kinman has also begun reaching out to other health care providers in the community including doctors and alternative health care practitioners in order to create a base of care for her clients.

“I think when you isolate it to just birth you miss something,” she said. “We’re trying to provide whole care and by ‘whole’ I mean whole woman.”

Kinman is already accepting clients who hope to have their babies born at Believing in Birth Wellness Center. She is excited to add a new facet to the job she loves.

“I get to see women on their strongest day,” Kinman explained. “I get to be the first one who touches God’s creation. I love my job.”

Believing in Birth Wellness Center

Raising $250,000 for the
future center at
www.indiegogo.com/projects/believing-in-birth-wellness-center

For more information go to
www.believinginbirth.com.

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed at this time.