The Face of Birth press kit

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Nov 18, 2013 (3 years and 10 months ago)

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The Face o
f Birth

press kit


Synopsis


The Face of Birth
-

a

film about pregnancy, childbirth and the power of choice.


Three

years in the making, filmed across the globe from London to Alice Springs, The
Face
of Birth is a movie

with vital information for anyone considering giving birth today.


In 2009 it nearly became illegal to have a homebirth

in Australia
. Thre
e years later in
2012 the number of women choosing a home
birth has doubled! Who are these women
and why are the medic
al establishment
and

current birth culture
so against them?


This 87
-
minute

documentary follows

the diverse
,

heart warming and sometimes he
art
wrenching stories of a hand
-
full of mothers as they guide us through the plethora of
information and opinions
fac
ing mothers

to
-
b
e

when

deciding how, where and with
whom to give birth
to their babies
.


The film

sort
s

fact from fiction
in childbirth. It explores
the poli
tics of risk, safety and
fear

and exposes our mistrust of women in
birth.

The film also features m
any of

the world
’s

to
p birth experts
, including the famed Sheila Kitzinger

(
author of over 23

books on
pregnancy and childbirth
)
, and the founder of modern midwifery in the USA
, Ina May
Gaskin.


W
e hear from
Dr Rupert Sherwood,
(President,
Royal Australian

and New Zealand College of
Obstetricians and Gynecolog
ists) whose college actively opposes

homebirth saying that it is
‘unsafe’.
O
bstetricians Euan Wallace and Andrew Bisits

(who have started up hospital
homebirth pilot programs.)

strongly disagree
,

clai
m
ing that modern obstetrics is not
serving the best interests of women.


Our diverse home birth mothers include AFI award winning actress Noni Hazlehurst.
She’s know by one generation from Playschool and another from City Homicide, but do
her fans know why

she chose a home birth?


Mother and doctor Sara

Renwick

-

Lau, chose a home birth for her second child after her
first baby was delivered by
emergency
caesarean
section at
a
maternity hospital in
Darwin where she also worked.
She claims

her independent mi
dwife gave much better
care than her colleagues at the hospital.


And young Aboriginal mum Tanya Kunoth, from the remote community Utopia in central
Australia, who had two babies in hospital and two babies on country, she shares why it’s
so important for h
er to be able to birth on her land, and why for her home felt safer than
in hospital.


Beautifully filmed

and openly revealing, The Face o
f Birth tells about all the things we
never knew about birth and the power of choice.






BIOS

Mothers


Noni Hazlehurst








Dr Sarah Renwick Lau


















Noni is one of Australia’s most distinguished and
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Johanna Preston







Vicki Car








Tanya Kunoth











Johanna lives in the glamorous world
of high fashion as an internationally
renowned shoe designer and
businesswoman. Johanna had her
three children at home
in her
studio/residence with her
independent midwife.


A Croatian Australian, Vicki holds the
prestigious position of Head Milliner at The
Australian Ballet. Vicki experienced medical
complications along her home birth journey,
which ev
entually led to an emergency
caesarean. She shares her experience, which
she describes as positive because she was
able to choose and retain independent
midwife lead care.

Tanya lives in a remote Aboriginal
community in central
Australia, 270
kilometers from the nearest hospital. She
has four children; two were born in
hospital and two born 'on country' with
her care led by the community health
service midwife.


BIOS

EXPERTS


Some o
f
our experts

(for a full list see
www.faceofbirth.com)


Sheila Kitzinger MBE






Michel Odent







Richard Por
ter







Hannah Dahlen

Social anthropologist, researcher, author and
campaigner for nurtured evidence
-
based childbirth,
Sheila lectures internationally and at

various universities and hospitals in midwifery.

She has written over 26 books on pregnancy and
childbirth including the well known
Politics of Birth
.
She now works with women who have had damaging
birth experiences and campaigns for women to have
the information they need to make choices about
childbirt
h

Michel Odent MD initially trained as a surgeon. He was
in charge of

the surgical and maternity units at the state
hospital in Pithiviers, France (1962
-
1985) where, he
introduced the first birthing centres and water births
d
uring the 1970s. Now he is a midwife, educator,
researcher and author of 12 books.

Following his hospital career he founded the Primal
Health Research Centre in London (UK), whose
objective is to study the long
-
term consequences of
early life experiences.

Richard Porter MA MSc BM BCh FRCOG is the
Director of Maternity Services at the Royal United
Hospital (RUH) in Bath, England.

He has been the Lead Uro
-
gynaecologist/Pelvic Floor
Surgeon since 2001.

He was an adviser on Maternity Services (in the
former USSR) to the World Health Organisation, UK
Department of International Development, and other
NGOs. He was Adviser on Maternity Services to
Ministry of Health, Uzbekistan from 1992 to 2003.

Hannah Dahlen is the Associate Professor of
Midwifery at the University of Western Sydney.


Hannah has published numerous papers in peer
reviewed journals and book chapters. She has
presented papers at over 100 conferences since
2000. She is
currently on the Australian College of
Midwives NSW Executive committee and was
nominated in 2008 as a life member for
outstanding contributions to the profession of
Midwifery.






Euan Wallace










Rhea Dempsey










Professor Euan Wallace MBChB, MD, FRCOG,
FRANZCOG gradua
ted with a degree in Medicine
from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, where
he completed his research and clinical training.
He


joined Monash University, Melbourne Australia in
1996.


He established and leads a Maternal
-
Fetal Medicine
Research Group

within Monash Institute for Medical
Research’s (MIMR) Centre for Women’s Health
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Professor Lesley Page was expert adviser to The King’s
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Lesley Page









Andrew Bisits







Sally Tracy









Andrew Bisits

MBBS (Syd FRANZCOG (RCOG)
DipClinEpidem (Newcastle) Master Med Statistics
(Newcastle) runs the birthing unit at Sydney's
Royal Hospital for Women.

He is an academic obstetrician with training in
epidemiology and biostatistics. Formerly he was
the Director

of Obstetrics in the Hunter Valley
region of New South Wales, Australia,

Sally is a midwife, researcher, author and activist.

She is the Professor of Midwifery at the University of
Sydney and based at the Midwifery Research Unit at
the

Royal Ho
spital for Women, Sydney. Her Research
projects include a randomised controlled trial of
caseload midwifery care and a project to determine the
safety of primary level midwifery led units.

She helped to set up the Ryde Midwifery Caseload
Practice in Sydney
, in 2003. Her current research
questions the acceptability of the increasing interference
of obstetrics with the physiological birth process.




Rupert Sherwood









Djapirri Mununggurritji






Lena Pula (Pwerle)








Dr Sherwood

-

President Royal Australian and New
Zealand College of Obstetricians and
Gynaecology
(RANZCOG) is a graduate of the Medical School of the
University of Tasmania.

For eight and a half years he
worked as a General Practitioner in Western Australia.
In 1992 he commenced specialist training at King
Edward Memorial Hospital in Pert
h where he was a
Registrar for three years before coming to the Royal
Hobart Hospital to complete his training in Obstetrics
and Gynaecology. In 1998 he helped form Hobart
OBGYN, a specialist obstetrics and gynaecology practice.
Dr Sherwood maintains an in
terest in teaching medical
students, registrars and residents at the Royal Hobart
Hospital. He is also a College examiner.

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female board members as an authority on women’s site
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Ina May Gaskin
















Robbie Davis Floyd







Ina May Gaskin MA, CPM is founder and director of the
Farm Midwifery Center, Tennessee, USA. She has
attended more than 1,20
0 births and is author of
Spiritual Midwifery
, now in its fourth edition. For twenty
-
two years she published

Birth Gazette
, a quarterly
covering health care, childbirth and midwifery issues.
She has lectured all over the world at midwifery
conferences and
at medical schools. In 1997, she
received the ASPO/Lamaze Irwin Chabon Award and the
Tennessee Perinatal Association Recognition Award. In
2003 she was chosen as Visiting Fellow of Morse College,
Yale University. Ina May
developed the Gaskin
Manoeuvre
-
t
he

first obstetrical manoeuvre to be named
after a midwife.

Robbie Davis Floyd PhD is a Senior Research Fellow in
Anthropology at the University of Texas, Austin, and an
Adjunct Associate Professor of Anthropology at Case

Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio.

She is a cultural anthropologist specializing in medical,
ritual and gender studies and the anthropology of
reproduction. She lectures at childbirth, midwifery and
obstetrical conferences around the world. Ro
bbie has
written over 70 articles as well as the book
Birth as an
American Rite of Passage

(1992).

Background:
Making The Face of Birth


Melb
ourne film
maker and actor Kate Gorman
,

pregnant for the third time
,

had just found
out
that her
right to choose
how, where and with whom
she gave birth

was under threat
.
S
hocked that she might
have one of the last legal home
births

in Australia
,
Kate was
compelled to make a film about the issue
. Her first call was to a producer friend, who
in
sisted she

talk to
Newcastle filmmaker, Gavin Banks.



Gavin
was in development of a documentary about
the
value of continuity of care in birth,
and the great divide between

the latest scientific recommendations (evidence
-
based
practice) and
clinical practice in modern maternity care.


The two filmmakers

met,
agreed to collaborate

and immediately

embarked on what was
to become a
three
-
year
, across
-
the
-
world
-
and
-
back

journey

to research, write, interview,
film and edit

The Face of Birth
.


KATE

-

‘It has been a privilege to meet the world top birth experts and to hear the stories
from our mothers,
I hope this film moves, entertains, informs and most of all, helps
women feel empowered to make informed choices for having their babies, helps them
h
ave empowered births with great
outcome
s and

without fear.

For as every mother
knows, that moment when you catch and hold your newborn to your bare skin is the
beginning of falling in love. How and where this happens is the first of a million choices
that
you will make for your child. Every choice needs to be respected for every women
and there needs to be the support to help her achieve the birth she wants whenever
medically possible.



The
Filmmakers




Kate Gorman








Kate has worked in the film industry for the last 25 years. As an actor
appearing in more than 25 TV programs including City Homicide, Rush, Kath
and Kim, Full Frontal and several years on some of
Australia’s best loved
soaps. S
ix feature

films and

25 play
s both here and in the UK.

As a writer she has written for, Comedy Inc and Full Frontal, breakfast radio
on TTFM as well as receiving development funding from Film Victoria for a
feature screenplay which was optioned by a Melbourne production house. She
we
nt onto write the screenplay for her award winning film FIVE MOMENTS
OF INFIDELITY which she also produced and directed.

FIVE MOMENTS OF INFIDELITY won
-

Best Film DIGISPAA, Best Film Salento
IFF (Ita
ly), Best Australian film I
PIFF (USA), and screened at
1
0 other
Festivals


receiving
further nominations for Best Screenplay, Best Direction
and several Best Performance nominations.

Kate has three children her eldest borne in a birth centre, 2nd at home in the
UK and her youngest at home in Melbourne. Kate i
s passionate about telling
stories, and by capturing on film strong women’s stories would like to help
change the culture of birth from one of fear to one of support and
empowerment.














Gavin Banks
















Gavin's career in film & TV started
almost 20 years ago when he
commenced a B.A. in Communication Studies. After graduating top
of his year he entered the world of broadcast television as an ENG
cameraman for PRIME television before moving into the private
sector where he started directing,
shooting and editing corporate
and industrial films.


In 2000 Gavin established his own boutique production company,
GOOD EYE DEER, which continues to produce content for many
local, national and international clients.


His first foray into documentary was

working as cinematographer
on the critically
-
acclaimed THE GREAT AUSTRALIAN LOCKOUT, a
1hr documentary for the history channel. Other achievements
include working as cinematographer on the multi
-
award
-
winning
short THE UNSPOKEN ; and working as Director o
f Photography on
the independent feature, BATHING FRANKY, released in June 2012.


Gavin's introduction to the benefits of natural, physiological
childbirth started in 2003, when he co
-
directed THE BIRTHRITE
EXPERIENCE, a 1hr educational film about the phys
iological
benefits of upright birth. Fascinated by the emotional impact of the
birth experience on mother and baby, Gavin's interest in birth
continued. Research began into understanding the divide between
the realities of modern maternity service provisio
n and evidence
-
based practice.


Gavin lives in Newcastle with his
partner and
two children.