Photovoice Art Exhibition

NPEC launches exhibition "Developing a Picture of Us" 2nd - 22nd November 2019

"Developing A Picture of Us" was an exhibition at Cork City Library, based on research that took place at Cork University Maternity Hospital with mothers experiencing complicated pregnancies.

This project, developed by Dr Sarah Meaney, Dr Sara Leitao, Dr Ria O'Sullivan and Prof Richard Greene in the National Perinatal Epidemiology Centre, offers an insight into the world of pregnancies with a diagnosis of intrauterine growth restriction.

The journey of bringing a baby into this world is an extremely personal one: a life changing moment. At times, however, the path is a complicated, and mothers and babies can experience ill-health that can extend well beyond childbirth. We have seen from research that complications in pregnancy and childbirth are common in Ireland, yet these struggles and suffering are often silent.

Very little research has focused on how mothers feel about these complications, so for our research, we invited mothers-to-be who were experiencing a complication in their pregnancy, and their partners, to take photographs over a two week period. These photographs, along with the parents' explanations, gave us an unprecedented insight into what it is like to have complications in pregnancy.

We are proud to present these photographs, words, and hospital artefacts to give the community an insight into these experiences so they are no longer silent and unspoken. We hope this exhibition will provide a space to bring these words and experiences centre stage and open conversations between patients, healthcare providers, and the community. We hope they will be empowered to make changes, and let other families experiencing complications know they are not alone.

This exhibition was featured in the press (see article).

We would like to thank all the midwifery staff in 2 South and the Fetal Assessment Unit in CUMH who supported this research project. Special thanks to Dr Hannah Glynn and Dr Aoife Morris for their assistance, and thank you to Teresa Rohan and Dr Brendan Murphy for gathering the hospital artefacts for our display.

National Perinatal Epidemiology Centre

Dept. of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, 5th Floor, Cork University Maternity Hospital, Wilton, Cork