Cecile de Scally has helped thousands of UAE mothers before, during and after birth since her arrival in 1997. You can now find her at a new centre in JLT.
Cecile, please tell us a little bit about yourself
I trained as a nurse and midwife at Addington, Durban, South Africa. I came to Dubai in 1997, as part of the set-up of American Hospital Dubai (AHD), with my task being to set up the antenatal classes within the hospital. At that time, American Hospital was the first private hospital to allow midwife-led births. I saw a real need in the market for proper postnatal support, as despite helping the mothers whilst they were within our care at the ward, I felt the mothers, babies and families were not suitably supported after they left the hospital.
As we became busier, this need increased even further and AHD assisted me in starting a formal service offering home visits for patients. However, I still saw an even greater need for all families in Dubai. So in 2008, I started an independent prenatal education and postnatal service in Dubai.
My vision for the Middle East is to create and provide a safe centre for mothers and families to come to, which not only provide good factual education prenatally, but also acts as solid postnatal support for establishing feeding and good sleep habits in newborns and babies as early as possible. I would like to leave something behind in Dubai for mothers when I do leave, as I have learnt so much.
I love rugby and work as a volunteer over weekends for my local Dubai-based club, I am focused on ensuring good pitchside care for the rugby players.
I also love to get out into the desert as often as possible this helps clear my mind. It is so peaceful out there!
What is Baby Senses?
We are a prenatal and postnatal support centre who provide fact based information on prenatal and postnatal concerns to parents of the UAE. This enables them to be supported and reassured in making appropriate informed decisions throughout this life event.
Why was it set up?
Baby Senses was set up to enable us to give as many parents as possible access to support and non medical advice in a trusted centre environment. First job is to create and provide safe centres for mothers and families to come to which not only provide good factual education prenatally, but also acts as solid postnatal support for establishing feeding and good sleep habits in newborns and babies as early as possible.
What services does Baby Senses offer mums?
We offer a range of prenatal services for soon to be parents, in the form of classes at the centre to prepare you for birth.
We also offer postnatal support after your bundle of joy arrives – to aid with sleep and feeding-related questions and queries.
What are the key things that mums and dads need to know pre-birth?
Parents need to be able to answer questions about how they would like to give birth.
We encourage them to develop their own birthing plan. And as a couple this will enable them to understand how things can change during the birth, and how to ask appropriate questions should things change.
We at Baby Senses believe that being properly informed can be the difference between a birth of your choice, and feeling pressured into choices that you do not really want.
What post-natal support do you offer to mums?
Baby Senses offers full post-natal support once your baby has arrived to cover all feeding and sleep-related concerns parents may have. We will refer appropriately where needed.
Why is post-natal support important, especially in Dubai?
Living in the UAE, we as expatriates do not have the traditional family support you would have back in your home country, so we need to rely on more extended methods of support as well as a lot of ‘mother-to-mother’ support networks. Mothers should never become isolated.
What are your future plans for Baby Senses?
Our aim is to continue to become a trusted brand as we expand, to provide support for as many mothers, fathers and babies as possible across the UAE and GCC area.
Baby Senses, Baby Senses Mother Child Centre DMCC, Jumeirah Business Centre 4, Jumeirah Lakes Towers. www.babysenses.me (04 558 7307).