Pregnancy, Childbirth and Post Natal Classes

Three courses are offered in the Pregnancy, Childbirth and Postnatal Education area:

Read about our Educators here.

Pregnancy and Childbirth Course

Also known as an ‘antenatal course’, this course helps parents to be and support people to prepare for childbirth and becoming parents, in a friendly, relaxed environment. The course is run by an experienced and qualified Childbirth Educator who has up to date knowledge of pregnancy and birthing practices, and is trained in leadership and adult education. Classes are held on a weekday evening (7pm-9.15pm) once a week for seven weeks, and include a small supper (Hot drinks and biscuits). Held in Porirua City, the location is convenient for expectant parents from the entire Porirua Region including Tawa, Titahi Bay,  Aotea, Canons Creek, Waitangirua, Whitby, Plimmerton and Pukerua Bay.

The teaching style is relaxed and informal, and a mixture of individual/couple or group exercises, whiteboard lead learning, and lots of participant lead question and answer sessions. Our courses aim to provide unbiased, rounded information that allows our participants to feel empowered and informed about pregnancy, childbirth and newborn parenting.

Pregnancy and Childbirth Classes
Childbirth and Pregnancy course Teaching session
Childbirth and Pregnancy course group exercise

Course Content

Pregnancy Content

  • Pregnancy anatomy
  • Pregnancy warning signs
  • Empathy belly
  • Nutrition and hazards
  • Discomfort and physical changes
  • Optimal foetal positioning
  • What to take to the hospital
  • Your rights regarding LMC care
  • Stretching, Pelvic floor awareness and exercise benefits

Labour and Birth Content

  • Signs and stages of labour
  • Birth videos
  • Birth positions
  • The role of the support person
  • Coping strategies, self-help, relaxation and massage
  • Interventions
  • Informed decision making and consent
  • Medical pain relief
  • Developing a birth plan

Postnatal Content

  • Breastfeeding
  • Bathing
  • Sleeping
  • Unexpected outcomes
  • Changes in lifestyle
  • Postnatal depression
  • The immediate postnatal period
  • Vitamin K
  • Coping strategies in the early weeks
  • Nappy options

Delivery Suite and Maternity Ward Tour

We are very excited to announce that a tour of Kenepuru Maternity Unit will now be included as part of our Childbirth Education Courses.

The tour will be optional but strongly recommended, to give expectant parents a chance to take in an environment a lot of first time parents don’t get to experience until the day their baby decides to arrive.

Even couples who plan to birth at Wellington or Hutt Hospitals will get something from seeing an example of a birthing suite and the postnatal facilities.

We are very proud to be offering this tour as a way to support the unit and the awesome work they do for new parents in our community.

Coffee Groups: On completion of your Childbirth Education class an initial catch-up will be arranged at a suitable time and place to encourage the development of a regular meeting (often called “coffee group”). This in effect is a support network of new Mums and Dads where you can bounce ideas of each other, support one another and enjoy the milestones having a child brings. The coffee group provides fantastic postnatal support and many couples develop lifelong friendships as they watch their children grow and their families expand.


  • Childbirth Course*: $220.00
  • Childbirth Course and Baby And You Course*: $285.00

* All Childbirth Class bookings also include One Year’s Mana Parents Centre Membership, entitling you to discounts on classes, retail discounts and all the other Mana Parents Centre Members Benefits. Please see the Membership page for more information. Prices increased on 1st July 2017 to cover our increased course operating costs.

When and Where: Courses start every four to six weeks (depending on demand), and we will be in touch to confirm which courses would best suit you based on your estimated due date and course availability.  We do our best to accommodate all booking requests, and try to have you on a course that will finish within 2-6 weeks of your estimated due date. Book early to ensure you don’t miss out!  We recommend booking once you have your estimated due date, and aim to have you starting a course when you are around 20-24 weeks gestation. Payment is required 4 weeks before the course begins to secure your place.

The course is held from 7pm to 9.15pm, once a week, for seven weeks.

From Jan 2020 this class is held at The Settlement, 1 Walton Leigh Place, Porirua 5022 – your course coordinator will confirm and give you details on how to find us once your class is set up and confirmed. 

Book a Pregnancy and Childbirth Course

Book Online Now

Baby And You Course

This four week programme follows on from your childbirth education class, after the birth of your baby and focuses on helping you adjust to the change in lifestyle and the many new demands of Parenthood. Classes are held once a week at a time to be organised with your Educator.

Baby and You classes are designed for parents with babies up to about 12 weeks of age.

Baby and You is run as a discussion group, giving you the opportunity to discuss what your particular situation and challenges are with your newborn. Because all babies are unique with varying needs and personalities, the Baby and You forum will allow you to discuss your baby’s individual behaviours, and receive tips, advice and potential strategies which you can adapt to your own situation. New mothers have found Baby and You to be a wonderful source of support and encouragement for those first weeks after the birth of their baby. We also welcome dads who may be the primary caregiver or who are on paternity leave. The forum also gives you a chance to make contact with other new parents and be able to form a “coffee group” so that the support continues long after the Baby and You class finishes.

Led by trained childbirth educators, the topics which are covered include:

  • A reflection on the birth experience
  • Feeding
  • Sleeping
  • Coping with crying
  • Lifestyle changes and looking after yourself
  • Infant massage
  • Physical development
  • Social and emotional development
  • Age appropriate toys and activities


  • Baby and You Course booked with a Childbirth Course*: $285.00
  • Baby and You Course (existing Mana Parents Centre Member)*: $75.00

* All Childbirth Course bookings include One Year’s Mana Parents Centre Membership, entitling you to various discounts and member benefits. Please see our membership page for more information. Prices increased on 1st July 2017 to cover our increased course operating costs. To attend a Baby and You course you must be a current Mana Parents Centre member, or be booking it in conjunction with a Childbirth Course (which includes a 1 year Mana Parents Centre Membership). To renew your Mana Parents Centre Membership, just fill in our renewal form and we’ll be in touch. 

Make a booking for Baby and You Course

Book Online

Bigger Baby And You Course

A three week follow on course for parents and babies aged 4 months +.

As babies change from 4 months onwards becoming more aware of the world and themselves you may need new strategies for sleep, feeding and play. This course gives you options to try, and an understanding of how your baby is developing and a chance to share with others going through the same stage.

Each session will include Q & A time to ensure your questions are answered, rather than what we think you need to know! Specific topics covered will include sleep, teething, starting solids, play & child development.

Facilitated by Chris Kelly (Qualified Childbirth Educator).

  • Babies can sleep in capsules / buggies or kick around on blankets
  • Morning tea provided
  • Changing and feeding facilities available
Bigger Baby and You Course


  • Mana Parents Centre Members: $45*
  • Non Members: $70

Book this class: 

Date/Time Class
Wed 17 Jun 2020
Bigger Baby And You
Mana Parents Centre @ The Settlement, Porirua - 8 places available
Wed 19 Aug 2020
Bigger Baby And You
Mana Parents Centre @ The Settlement, Porirua - 10 places available
Wed 21 Oct 2020
Bigger Baby And You
Mana Parents Centre @ The Settlement, Porirua - 10 places available
Wed 2 Dec 2020
Bigger Baby And You
Mana Parents Centre @ The Settlement, Porirua - 10 places available

About our Childbirth Educators

Liz Hibberd

Liz Hibberd

Pregnancy and Childbirth Educator

Hi, my name is Liz. My first experience of Parents Centre was in 1998 when attending antenatal classes when I was pregnant myself.   I continue to share a special friendship with some of the women from this class and our children are lifelong buddies.  I got so much from Parents Centre and it was important to me to ‘give back’, and so I joined the local committee for a number of years.

My personal experience of birthing and becoming a parent blew me away. The physiology and philosophy of birthing within a supportive environment was so life-changing, it left me with a passion to become a Childbirth Educator.

My family keeps me busy with 2 sons at college now – Jack and Flynn, and Sacha who is at primary school.  My husband Stuart has 2 daughters one of whom has a son – so I’m now a step-Grandma!

I have been teaching since 2001 and I still feel very honoured to be involved with a group of expectant parents and be part of that very special and intimate time in their lives. My career in this field developed, leading to my employment by Aoraki Polytechnic as a supervisor for trainee Childbirth Educators, facilitator of the 5-day workshop and marker of childbirth education assignments.

In June 2010 I began working at Parents Centre’s National Support Centre where I am currently the National Childbirth Education Manager. In 2010 I also was given the unique opportunity to facilitate the delivery of Parents Centres parenting programmes within prisons in the Wellington and Manawatu regions. This has been a fantastic journey, full of challenges and an unbelievable sense of job satisfaction.

Outside of work and my family?  I love to spend quality time with friends be it socializing, camping, exercising, movies and just having a good old laugh!

Chris Kelly

Chris Kelly

Pregnancy and Childbirth Educator

Hi my name is Chris and most importantly, I’m a Mum to two great boys, Lawrence and Eddie.

Prior to having my boys I worked in the UK as a maternity nurse. After coming home and attending a Parent Centre antenatal class I decided it was the job for me! I’ve been teaching classes for over 6 years and still get a buzz sharing the excitement and anticipation with the expectant parents in every class I teach. I have a very relaxed teaching style.

Classes cover everything from some of the more alternative options through to medical interventions.

My intention is to give parents a broad knowledge of birth and parenting so that they feel empowered about the choices they make during the birth process and as parents.

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