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Events & Conferences
Regular meetings, hub events and annual conferences for all those whose work touches on infant mental health

Each year AiMH and the Regional Hubs organise a variety of events for members and non-members. They range from national and regional conferences to local events organised by individual Hubs.

The events address a wide range of interests relevant to the early years and infant mental health provision, and include seminars, clinical workshops and case discussions.

If you know of events relevant to infant mental health, that are not included here, please tell us and other members about it directly in the IMH Events forum.

AiMH UK Scotland Hub Event 9th December 2021

‘Different Approaches, Working Together for Infant Mental Health’

Delegates at our AIMH UK Scotland Hub event in June fed back how much they enjoyed thinking about infant mental health work through the medium of case studies. 

In response, we have put together a morning of casework presentations and discussion by professionals, with the opportunity to discuss these in a locality of your choice. 

Programme for the AIMH UK Scottish Hub 

Outline of the day 

9 – Welcome 

9.10 – 10. Presentation of case study where the Family Nurse Partnership and Mellow Parenting were used together 

10 – 10.30 – Small group discussion in localities: using different approaches together, what is possible in your area 

10.30 – 10.45 – Feedback from groups and any questions 

10.45 – 10.55 – Break 

10.55 – 11.55 – A single case scenario discussed by different professions, with representatives from: Health Visiting, Home-Start, SureStart Midlothian, a Child Psychotherapist from an Infant Mental Health service and a representative from Edinburgh’s Multi-Cultural Family Base. They will discuss how they would support the family and what they would add in their role. 

11.55 – 12.15 – Small group discussion in same locality groups as before 

12.15 – 12.30 – Plenary and close 

Register for the event today!

Tickets: Members: free Non-Members: £15 

If you would like to become a member of AiMH UK and get your ticket for free, join here 

AiMH UK National Conference 2021 ‘ Taking a Stand, Making a Start’

Friday 19th November 2021

Join us for the online AiMH UK National Conference celebrating 25 years from our launch in May 1996.

‘Taking a Stand, Making a Start: Culturally informed and inclusive practise with infants and their families’

TICKETS: Members: £35 Non-Members £55

9.30am – Welcome Jane Barlow – President of AiMH UK

9.45am 11.15am ‘Recognising unconscious bias in working with parents and infants: raising our awareness’ 

Yvonne Osafo (Parent Infant Psychotherapist & Early Intervention Lead, West London Action for Children) 

Anna Godfrey (Child Psychotherapist & Parent Infant Psychotherapist, Croydon Best Start Family Solutions)(Presentation plus Questions / Discussion). 

11.15am – Comfort break 

11.30am – 1.00pm ‘Culturally sensitive infant mental health projects – learning from The Baby Mat Project, South Africa’ 

Ester Chunga, (Clinical Director, Ububele Education & Psychotherapy Trust, South Africa) 

Zanele Mokolutlo (Early Childhood Community Practitioner, Ububele, Johannesburg, South Africa) Discussion led by: Tessa Baradon (Consultant Parent Infant Psychotherapist & Author of The Practice of Psychoanalytic Parent-Infant Psychotherapy, Adjunct Professor University of Witwatersrand, South Africa) 

Followed by; 1001 days: Trailer for A feature documentary filmed in South Africa.

The film documents community-based work with mothers and babies in one of the poorest urban areas in South Africa. 1001 days shows how it is possible to make a difference to the lives of mothers and babies in the first 1001 days – the most critical time in any child’s life. 
AiMH UK are proud to be a backer of this film project and look forward to the film being launched in December 2021 and to screening the film for AiMH UK members and friends in the New Year!

1.30pm – Lunch Break

2.00pm- 2.30pm ‘Celebrating 25 years’ of AiMH UK

AiMH UK Awards presentation 

AIM Foundation bursaries announcement 

2.30pm – 3.30pm ‘Transcending cultural barriers: helping post-natally depressed parents to connect with their infants through lullabies and song’

Lorna Greenwood, Project Manager, Melodies for Mums 
Rosie Perkins, Chair of Music, Health & Social Science, Centre for Performance Science, Imperial College London . 

3.30pm – Close of program.

BOOK YOUR TICKETS NOW!

AiMH UK Hub Launch for East of England; ‘Nurturing Moments Matter’

‘Relationships, risks and repair: Early intervention with vulnerable babies and families.’

Introduction – 10am

Dawn Cannon – Director of Education and CPD AiMH UK

Key Note Speaker – 10.15am

Robin Balbernie; Renowned Child Psychotherapist and trustee of AiMH UK

‘Relationships, risks and repair: Early intervention with vulnerable babies and families

Break – 11.00am 

Speakers – 11.15am

Jennifer Wakelyn; Watch me play programme for vulnerable infants and their carers

Catherine Sutton; Early Years Advisor, (Norfolk’s Virtual School for Children in Care and Previously Looked After): Watch Me Play; The Norfolk Experience

Break-Out Rooms – 12.00pm

Closing Speaker – 12.45pm

Keeley White Executive Head of the Virtual School – Looked after and Previously Looked After Children

End – 1.00pm

Book your tickets on Eventbrite

Bristol, Somerset & Gloucestershire IMH Hub Networking Event

‘What we do: Sharing practice and learning from each other’ Monday 4th October 10.00am – 12.30pm

10.00 Welcome + Introductions 

Rachel Pardoe & Rachel Allender 

10.20 Rockabye, Bristol 

Clare Beckell (Trainer & Supervisor) + Shan Nur (Group Leader)

‘Working cross-culturally in groups with mothers and babies’ 

10.50 Discussion – breakout rooms 

11.10 Whole Group discussion 

11.25 Tea break 

11.40 Home Start 

Alex Corgier (HS Coordinator, Stroud & Gloucester) with Home Start Volunteer

‘Widening awareness of infant mental health in family support work’ 

Rachel Pardoe – discussant 

12.00 Discussion – breakout rooms 

12.20 Whole Group discussion 

12.30 Close 

Book your tickets on Eventbrite

AiMH UK London Hub Online Event ‘Ways of seeing and being seen’

An Online Event – Friday 17th September 2021 from 12.00pm – 3.00pm – ‘Ways of seeing and being seen How Colour and Ethnicity impact on Experiences of Maternity and Infant Mental Health Care

Gwen Kirkwood, the new Lead for AiMH UK’s London Hub will introduce the event, planned in the context of the latest MBRRACE-UK* report: ‘Saving Lives, Improving Mothers’ Care’. One of the key findings highlighted is that, ‘Maternal death rates were almost four times higher for women from Black ethnic backgrounds and almost two times higher for women from Asian ethnic backgrounds compared to white women’. (Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists – MBRRACE-UK report response, 14th January, 2021). 

*MBRRACE-UK – Mothers and Babies: Reducing Risk through Audits and Confidential Enquiries across the UK.

Gwen Kirkwood is a Psychoanalytic Parent-Infant Psychotherapist (PPIP) and Child and Adolescent Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist. Gwen works as a PPIP in an NHS CAMHS clinic in London.

12.20pm – 1.00pm

Clotilde Rebecca Abe is the co-founder of Five X More – set up, after the 2019 MBRRACE-UK report was published, which stated that in the UK, Black women are five times more likely to die in pregnancy, or childbirth than white women.

Clo continues to campaign for better maternal mental health services for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) women. 

Clo is also the founder of Prosperitys – a maternal well being social enterprise, supporting BAME women.

1.05pm – 1.45pm

‘I’ve always felt wrong’….Reflections on colourism in parent-infant psychotherapy.

Presented by Coretta Ogbuagu.

Coretta Ogbuagu is the Lead Child and Adolescent Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist and Psychoanalytic Parent-Infant Psychotherapist working in an NHS service in London.

1.45pm – 2.00pm – Break

2.00pm – 2.45pm

Networking event for AiMH UK London Members

2.45pm – 3.00pm – Rounding up the afternoon.

(Note: the slots for the main speakers will include time for questions and answers).

Book your tickets on Eventbrite

The WAIMH 2021 World Congress – you can still register after the event!

The World Association for Infant Mental Health (WAIMH) 2021 World Congress was held on 22 – 26 June 2021 – but all the content is available online, as recorded presentations and workshops – you can still register here.

All registered attendees have 24/7 access to over 200 hours of WAIMH Congress content for the next 6 months (ie until December 2021). Stimulating and engaging presentations were given by clinicians/researchers from around the world, and renowned speakers in infant mental health, including Joy Osofsky, Alicia Lieberman, Arietta Slade, Campbell Paul, Colwyn Trevarthen, and Louise Newman.

Click here to read more about the Program.

Cost: for non-WAIMH members the online fee is $600 Australian dollars, ie around £327 (reduced fee for members – worth considering).

WAIMH Award for our President, Jane Barlow, Congratulations!

WAIMH Award - Jane Barlow

On Thursday, in the early hours of the morning at the WAIMH Congress held in Brisbane, Australia and virtually around the globe, our President, Professor Jane Barlow received an Award in recognition of all her hard work and dedication to Infant Mental Health.

Jane commented, “Being made this year’s recipient of the WAIMH Award was just the loveliest surprise, and I accepted it on behalf of the AiMH UK team, whose passion and energy for IMH is a constant source of inspiration to me”.

AiMH UK are very proud of this acknowledgement and all the work that Jane has undertaken to move IMH into the forefront of people’s minds and government policy and moving our charity forward over the last 10 years.

Well done and congratulations from all the AiMH UK team and members. See full details on the WAIMH Perspectives website

COMING OUT OF LOCKDOWN

A non-virtual event in Liverpool, Friday 25th June 2021 – 2 till 4pm. Bringing together parent-infant health practitioners in the North West. Please book your tickets on Eventbrite

Only 20 spaces available so book your place now!

This will be an opportunity to:

• Share experiences and reflect on how Covid-19 has affected our relationships with our colleagues, with ourselves and with the families we work with.

• Consider what we have learnt over the past year and think about what we want to take forward into our future practice.

The event will be dependent on COVID-19 restrictions / lifting of group numbers. 

The North West Hub will run further meetings should this prove very popular.

WAIMH 2021 – contributions by AiMH members

Here are some contributions to the Congress by AiMH members. Please contact AiMH if you or colleagues presented, and we can add them here. You can still register for WAIMH 2021!

The Infant, The Parents, And The Psychoanalyst – including a tribute to Dilys Daws

Campbell Paul, President of WAIMH, chaired this event – which included a brief interview with Dilys Daws to mark the 25th anniversary of AiMHuk. Fascinating to hear Dily’s account of the beginnings of AiMHuk.
Friday 25th June, 7.30 – 8.50am.

Running an Infant Mental Health Organisation: Models of Working

Jane Barlow (in her particular WAIMH role in linking up the ‘affiliate’ IMH organisations around the world – AiMHuk is just one) chaired three sessions on the theme of ‘Models of Working’, including:

Piret Visnapuu-Bernadt, Nicole Canin & Jane Barlow: Wednesday 23 June, 10.30 – 11.45

Anna Huber, Jane Barlow, Nichole Paradis & Nicole Milburn: Friday 25 June, 2100 – 2200

Providing a parent-infant therapeutic intervention online: Video Interaction Guidance – empowering parents during COVID-19 (Workshop theme: Antenatal and perinatal practices)

Rachel Pardoe and Jessica Williams presented a pre-recorded workshop:

Kangaroo logo

#IMHAW – #including infants – Report reveals a ‘baby blindspot’

A Report released for #IMHAW by the Parent-Infant Foundation captures the findings of a survey with nearly 300 children and young people’s mental health professionals across the UK. This shows significant gaps in both training and provision for babies and toddlers. Key findings include:

  • Only 36% of respondents reported that, within children and young people’s mental health services in their area, there are mental health services that can work effectively with babies and toddlers aged 0-2.
  • Only 52% of respondents said their local NHS children and young people’s mental health service took referrals for children aged two and under. Many of these respondents told us that, while this was the referral criteria on paper, in reality, the service was not working with young children.
  • Only 9% of respondents felt there was “sufficient provision available for babies and toddlers whose mental health was at risk” in their area.
  • During their pre-qualification training, 26% of respondents had not been trained to work with 0–2-year-olds. 
  • 48% had not had experience of working with this age group during their training.

The research shows, yet again, that there is a “baby blindspot” in our mental health system and more must be done to ensure that there are appropriate services available to work with babies and their families.

1001 days: a feature documentary about motherhood

A group of extraordinary women fight to transform the lives of mothers and new babies in their beloved township.

As the country grapples with systemic racism and inequality, the fearless and charismatic Thandiwe, Zanele and Khosi doggedly support new mothers, waging a daily battle against poverty, domestic abuse and addiction. Their aim: to help new mothers during the first 1001 days of their babies’ lives, which are the most critical time in any human’s life. And to transform the babies lives and opportunities, as well as those of generations to come.

To find out more and back the campaign visit the Kickstarter page: tinyurl.com/4z4rm84b

Early Years Health Development Review

The early years review – The best start for life: a vision for the 1,001 critical days – has been led by Early Years Health Adviser Andrea Leadsom MP and sets out a vision for best practice across the health system to ensure babies and children can get the best possible start. It was great to see our President, Professor Jane Barlow attend the launch and be a key speaker delivering a presentation on why the 1001 critical days are so critically important.

Please click on the link for the full recording of the launch. Jane’s presentation is 15 minutes into the video.  Click here

‘Babies & Young Children under Lockdown: Attunement and Adaptation’

On 5th March the AiMH UK London Region Hub welcomed 47 participants to its second online event, ‘Babies & Young Children under Lockdown: Attunement and Adaptation. The event was a welcome opportunity for London region infant mental health practitioners to connect with each other. Outgoing London Region Hub lead Sara Rance reviews the event below and invites suggested themes for future hub events from AiMH UK London Hub members.

Engaging Fathers & Working during COVID

Friday 22 January 2021 9.30-12.00

Dr Cerith Waters (Senior Lecturer, Clinical Lead for perinatal services, Cardiff; accredited VIG practitioner) and Rachel Pardoe (Child Psychotherapist, VIG supervisor).

The importance of including fathers in interventions that address emerging problems in the parent-infant relationship: a VIG case example

This online event went very well – over 70 practitioners booked from all over the UK – several working in community services for Dads. Many positive comments in the Zoom Chat and active verbal discussion.

Dr. Cerith Waters shared emotionally moving and effective therapeutic work, using VIG. It was clearly an inspiration for many who attended.

Cerith also presented research data on Fathers mental health during the perinatal period, and he shared the BPS Guidance on Working remotely with parents and infants during pregnancy and postpartum.

Handouts will be emailed to all attendees. Logged in AiMH members can see more information here in the AiMH UK-wide Forum. Please add your comments (whether or not you attended the event).

Watch Infant Sleep Lecture and read Dilys Daws’ new book on Infant Sleep Problems

Dilys Daws with Sarah Sutton’s ‘Parent Infant Psychotherapy for Sleep Problems’ (Routledge 2020) is a wonderful addition to the literature on the subject of infant sleep. This book includes infancy research, a psychoanalytic perspective on infant sleep problems and case studies.

A lecture on ‘What is Normal Infant Sleep? A view from Anthropology’ was given on 11th Nov 2020 by Professor Helen Ball of the Durham Infancy & Sleep Centre and it is still accessible on YouTube, together with the Q & A.

You can find everything we do on our website, the Baby Sleep info Source  where we have resources for parents and healthcare professionals, including downloadable information sheets and an infantsleep app. You can also find us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.