December 08, 2023

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Baby born in Nipissing First Nation a historic birth

Baby born in Nipissing First Nation a historic birth

Mother Cassandra Laforest-Roy, and father Nick Piquette with baby Roman Laforest, Carol Couchie and Rachel Dennis. Photo courtesy of: Allison Roberts, Darkwoods Photography.

NIPISSING FIRST NATION—The miracle of life has taken place on Nipissing First Nation territory with the birth of Roman. The arrival of Roman Laforest marks the first birth on Nipissing First Nation at a midwifery clinic with culturally appropriate child and maternity care.

Father Nick Piquette was by Roman’s mother’s side, Cassandra Laforest-Roy.

A mother and daughter midwife team of Carol Couchie and Rachel Dennis helped ensure a safe arrival. Rachel announced Roman was born at 3:54 P.M. with a good birth without complication.

“He was her first baby and she a young mom of 20,” shared Dennis.

Cassandra and Nick arrived at the clinic at 10:30 A.M. with Carol Couchie with Rachel attending shortly after. Second Attendant Jane Collins assisted.

The K’Tigaaning Midwifery Clinic is on Couchie Industrial Road, right beside Necessities, on Nipissing First Nation (NFN). Their doors have been open since November 2016.

Rachel and Carol are NFN community members and very proud to be supporting the growth of Nipissing First Nation.

“It’s been over a year long process in making the birthing clinic,” stated Couchie. “Our plan has always been to have the practice on reserve.”

Carol has assisted a home birth on Nipissing First Nation as well.

There will be follow-up visits for the mother to receive medical advice on mothering and breastfeeding.

Rachel Dennis gives praise to Nadine Payette, Natalie Payette-Chevrier, and Doug Chevrier for making the birthing centre a reality on NFN.

“We were given Natalie Payette-Chevrier and Doug Chevrier’s number saying that professional office space was available,” shared Dennis. “The location is very close to the hospital. They were really great with us.”

The midwives are excited about being one of six clinics chosen to receive funding through Ontario’s new Aboriginal Midwifery Program to preserve communities.

The K’Tigaaning Midwifery Clinic is considered a priority designation for midwifery students coming from universities such as Ryerson, Laurentian, and McMaster for opportunities with prioritizing Indigenous students.

This article was originally written by Anne Smith and published on Anishinabek News. This article has been republished with permission. 
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MUSKRAT Magazine

MUSKRAT is an on-line Indigenous arts, culture magazine that honours the connection between humans and our traditional ecological knowledge by exhibiting original works and critical commentary. MUSKRAT embraces both rural and urban settings and uses media arts, the Internet, and wireless technology to investigate and disseminate traditional knowledges in ways that inspire their reclamation.

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