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Celebrating International Midwives Day

It’s International Midwives Day on May 5 every year and this year we wanted to celebrate some of our amazing midwifery teaching staff. Read about three of our incredible Wintec Midwifery kaiako and make sure to thank a midwife you know for all their hard work.

To learn about Wintec | Te Pūkenga midwifery courses and where they are held check out our info page.

Judy Thomson-Emmett is the longest serving member of the midwifery team at Wintec |Te Pūkenga. She works as the Kaiako/Clinical Educator for the Te Matau a Māui/Hawke's Bay hub, providing clinical support and education to the Hawke's Bay based midwifery students and support/pastoral care.

Judy Thomson-Emmett promoting midwifery at a Wintec open day.

“As well as the face-to-face teaching, I organise their clinical placements and rosters, and liaise between the students and the local midwives - both Lead Maternity Carer (LMC) and Hospital based. I have been with Wintec and the Hawke's Bay hub since its conception in 2010.”

Judy studied nursing when she left school. 

“Pregnancy and birth were the areas I particularly loved. Every time things got interesting or more complex, the midwives came and took over from the nurses and I knew that was what I wanted to do. That was 33 years ago.”
Prior to her role as Kaiako/Clinical Educator, Judy was working as a Core/Hospital Midwife at Hawke's Bay DHB. 

“I have continued this role in conjunction with my Wintec role, but in a part-time capacity. I work 0.4 FTE as a Core Midwife and 0.5 FTE for Wintec.”
Judy said she would “absolutely promote” midwifery as a career. 

“There are so many different aspects to it; antenatal, labour and birth, postnatal and newborn care and every day is different. We get to support and care for women and whānau in their pregnancy journey, be it normal or complicated, supporting them to become a new family. 

“There are also many work options to suit the individual and their families. Lead Maternity Carer (LMC), Core, Education, full-time or part-time, days, evening or nights - it is not a one size fits all job. If my career was starting over again, I would still pick the same one,” she said.

Janet Taiatini said she became a midwife from a natural progression as a Registered Nurse working in hospital.  

“Supporting whānau in their birthing experience is very rewarding. I am part of Te Ara o Hine-Tapu Ora, working with students who are Māori and Pacifica on the midwifery program at Wintec | Te Pūkenga. I have a long history and career in midwifery inclusive of home birthing, private practice, business, teaching and team member within hospital-based services.  

“There are many parts to midwifery practice that make up the whole. The diverse career range of practicing as a midwife involve research, teaching, clinician, and specialist fields within New Zealand and Internationally. This is a rewarding career, although challenging with study routines, and having a life outside study. I wish you well if you journey down the midwifery pathway,” Janet said.

Ruth Chisholm said her mama was her inspiration as she was a nurse, social worker and teacher. And, she said, the rest of her family encouraged her into the world of medicine too, her father was a doctor, her brother is a psychiatric nurse, and her sister is a clinical psychologist.

Ruth trained as a nurse and with no jobs available for a new graduate at the time she said the only option for her in 1990 was Advanced Nursing or, Midwifery in Ara, Christchurch. She chose Midwifery and is now Te Ara O Hine-Tapu Ora Liaison (liaison to Māori and Pasifika Midwifery Students) at Wintec.

“I have had the best ride ever in my chosen career. I’ve had an incredible career journey leading me to Gisborne, Te Puia Springs, East Coast, West Coast of the South Island, Christchurch, Auckland, and Tonga. 

“With experiences in tertiary, secondary, primary midwifery care with my preference for home-birth, midwifery has led me to meet incredible colleagues, knowledgeable mentors and access to Māori and Pasifika practices. 

“Having been on national boards such as Nga Maia National Māori Midwives Board, Pasifika Midwives Aotearoa and, New Zealand College of Midwives National Board, I have a national perspective, compassion and, wisdom to bring into my role as Liaison to Māori and Pasifika Midwifery Students at Wintec. I believe I have the best job in the world!” Ruth said.

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