MIDLAND-ODESSA, TX (KWES) - March for Moms takes place in D.C. every year but it'll be the first time a sister event will be held in the Permian Basin. It's all to get many families together for the discussion to lead to more opportunities to improve births everywhere.
Jenny Townsend is a registered nurse, a doula, and a Lamaze certified childbirth educator.
"I have a passion for nurturing women and so after I gave birth to my first child, I saw the potential what birth can be and how healthy it can be," said Townsend. "I just caught the bug."
She's helping bring the March for Moms gathering locally, hoping to ease an ongoing problem in the country. Because over the years, there's been an increase in induction rates, maternal mortality, prematurity and the access to maternity care has become harder for expecting moms.
"We have a critical shortage of healthcare providers and maternal maternity healthcare providers," said Townsend. "In our area, we have some great care providers. We have Midland Community Health Services and lots of other great healthcare providers but they're maxed out. Women are having to call their preferred care providers and still don't get in with who they want to get in."
Getting that immediate help has also become difficult for women with post-partum depression. About 15-21% of women will experience anxiety or depression during that child-bearing period. It's a service that's needed immediately.
"She needs to tell someone and get help quickly. In our area, women in our area are limited in finding someone they can get in with within a three-month time frame," said Townsend. "From when they decide 'I need help" and they can get an appointment."
Townsend said one of the steps for positive experiences is communication with healthcare providers. Because with more discussion to unify providers, legislators and families, that's more doors to open for maternity care improvement.
"When they have a positive experience, it has a big impact on families, that means children, children's grades, marriages, everything," said Townsend.
The March for Moms Permian Basin will be on May 6 from 4-6 p.m. It'll be at Butler Park in Midland. There will be bounce houses, food trucks, informational booths, plus local speakers and mothers sharing their stories.
To stay up to date with the Permian Basin event, click here.