New app to help keep Māori birthing practices alive

By Aroha Treacher

Ngā Maia, the national body for Māori midwives, has created a new app designed to help keep traditional Maori birthing practices alive. 

"It is bringing our traditions into the 21st century so that we can keep them alive," says Ngā Maia chairperson Bev Te Huia, "It's just another platform- we don't even know the potential of this app yet.  It will evolve." 

Te Huia, a midwife of almost twenty years says the app enables more communication, allowing midwives to share information and stories among themselves.

"Many of our Māori live rurally and the job of a midwife can be quite lonely and working in isolation.  And so, having an app, it's just a tool - it's to enable us to connect better and share our stories."

The aim is also to break down barriers for young mothers so they can connect with a Māori midwife.

"Mums can find a Māori midwife in their area and that [removes] a huge barrier for young Māori mums or young mums wanting a Māori midwife-  Anyone can download it."

The Ngā Maia Māori Midwives app can be downloaded for free on the app store.