Thanks to the Auxiliary at Central Peninsula Hospital (CPH) Laura Williams, an obstetrics technician will be able to become a lactation consultant after receiving specialized training in Anchorage. Following her training Williams says she will return to continue services for local moms, “I’ve been interested since Kris Waycum a nurse in our department who is a lactation consultant with a passion for breast feeding came to me saying she would be retiring in November and wanted someone to carry on in her place. So I stepped up and she took me under her wing and has been supporting me through the process,” she said. According to Williams about one third of mothers have problems with breast feeding, “We know that statistically and then new moms always need some help. To make the process work isn’t as easy as you might think. The baby has to do certain things, the mom has to do certain things and once they meld together we get healthy moms and healthy babies.” Williams said the scholarship will help cover the expenses of the training and living expenses that would have been difficult for her to meet without the assistance.
At a special check presentation last week Jim Childers, CPH volunteer coordinator explained how the auxiliary raised the funds and chose Williams as a recipient. “Most of the funding for our scholarships come from the gift shop here at the hospital. The gift shop is run solely by volunteers, from the purchasing to sales, and bookkeeping. Seventy percent of that business comes from CPH employees, so we focus our scholarships on those who will bring back their services here to our community rather than funding scholarships for those who will take their training and services to other places outside. Laura was a perfect candidate for our mission that starts here at the hospital and ends here at the hospital,” said Childers. “The Auxiliary has committed its resources to help the hospital, and work more closely with the Central Peninsula Health Foundation. We have budgeted more money to help the hospital and Heritage Place purchase equipment which will increase the patient’s or resident’s care. The Scholarship fund was also increased significantly to $8,000 for senior students, and another $10,000 for Employees scholarships in 2015,” he said.
According to Childers last year the Auxiliary teamed up with the Central Peninsula Health Foundation to purchase a Lucas Compression CPR System which cost $17,000. This has helped in the Emergency Department to give consistent and continued compressions freeing up staff and guaranteeing proper compressions. At the same time the team bought 2 slider chairs for HP residents which lock, decreasing the chance for falls when a resident stands. Williams encouraged moms to learn more about the services by calling CPH, “Right now we’re only open four hours a week on Wednesday’s but we hope to expand as time goes on but mothers in need please call and we’ll even come in on our days off, any day any time,” said Williams. There are many opportunities to volunteer at the hospital. If you would like more information please contact Jim Childers, Volunteer Coordinator at CPH.