A helping hand for moms and babies

A Bothasig woman has started a project that gives new mothers who find themselves in desperate circumstances a shoulder to lean on.

Amy Vos, the founder of the Nehemiah Safe House, has been delivering care bags once a week to moms and their babies at the Karl Bremer Hospital’s post-natal ward since June.

“So many of the moms at the hospital are young and first-time moms. They have little to no support, and I just felt that they deserved a good start to their parenting journey,” said Ms Vos.

“I also wanted to let them know that no matter the circumstances and how tough it may seem, they are a good enough parent for their child.”

Often accompanied by her sister, Dianne Rossouw, Ms Vos drops off about 27 bags each week at the ward. Northern News went with the two women on Thursday September 1 when they met 24 mothers, one of whom stood out in particular for the sisters.

“She is only 19, and she was struggling to cope with the emotions of being a new mom and not being able to go home immediately. She was struggling to breastfeed, and the baby was not regulating her sugar or picking up weight.

“We spent some time with this mom and gave her some extra goodies for her baby as she literally only had a vest for her,” said Ms Vos.

It’s moments like these that remind the sisters why they do what they do.

“We receive donations from family and friends as well as from people who have joined our Facebook page and via word of mouth.

“We have been very blessed to receive enough items every week for our care bags, but should we be short then I would buy the items needed to fill the bags,” said Ms Vos.

Western Cape College of Nursing (WCCN) spokesperson Zolani Zenzile said the project supported the Western Cape government’s First 1000 Days initiative, which underscores how important this period is in shaping a child’s future.

“The Karl Bremer Hospital thanks Nehemiah Safe House and other similar organisations for all the contributions and assistance they give to moms and new-borns,” Mr Zenzile said.

Nehemiah Safe House also provides a home for abused and abandoned children.

“We look after children on short term as well as long-term basis. All children that come to us do so under a court order. We currently have one child in our care.

Blair Catherine Petersen posted a comment on Nehemiah Safe House’s Facebook page about the work Ms Vos does.

“Today’s appreciation post goes out to the one and only Amy Vos. From feeding the homeless, to creating care packs for moms and babies in need in hospitals and offering them a support system, always so humble and so selfless in everything you do, always willing to lend a helping hand to anyone who is in need, you are an example of unconditional love in action. The list could go on and on. Thank you for sharing your dream with us and letting all of us be a part of your journey.”

Contact Ms Vos at 072 049 2709 or nehemiahsafehouse@gmail.com for more information or to help.