Name: Bonnie Hunter
What does your job entail? I am a lead maternity carer (LMC) midwife, working in the community. I am self-employed, with a caseload of women whom I look after throughout their pregnancies, births and until their babies are six weeks old. I care for women during labour and birth and several days of the week I run a clinic where I see pregnant women to monitor their health and that of their babies. If complications arise outside my scope of practice, I refer to an obstetrician or relevant health professional.
How long have you been doing it? I’m in my first year of practice.
What attracted you to this line of work? After school I completed a degree in communications. After several years working overseas, I decided to follow my passion for pregnancy and childbirth and become a midwife.
What training was involved? The course is a direct entry midwifery degree, which runs over three years. It’s largely practical, with much of the third year doing work placements. It’s a demanding course, and took lots of time and commitment to manage both the practical and theory.
What do you love most about your job? Relationship building; I love getting to know the women and their families during their pregnancies. That can really help during the birth and weeks after baby is born. I love seeing the look on parents’ faces when they first hold their babies.
And what are the worst bits? The demanding nature of the work; its unpredictable hours.
What motivates you in your work? The relationships I build with the women and their families.
What are your career goals? Midwives are leaving because their pay doesn’t match the demands of the job. My goal is to maintain a sustainable practice, so I can work with women and families for a very long time.
Do you have any key mentors or people who have influenced you? During our first year of practice we work alongside a mentor who guides and supports us. My mentor is an amazing role model.
Where did you grow up and what was it like? I grew up in Hawke’s Bay and went to Iona College in Havelock North. I had an awesome childhood and made lifelong school friends.