Going the extra mile

To many new mums Kate Campbell is a national hero, and now she has the award to prove it. Catherine Scott caught up with the midwife who goes above and beyond the call of duty.

Kate Campbell with mums and babies

Kate Campbell, midwife at Jessops Hospital in Sheffield and antenatal and postnatal fitness expert, is a “national hero”.

Kate, 38, from Fulwood, received the Tommy’s and Danone Baby Nutrition “Hero” award at a star-studded ceremony in London on Friday after supporting and inspiring hundreds of mums and mums-to-be to have the healthiest pregnancy possible, through her passion for pregnancy health and wellbeing.

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Kate was nominated by class member, Sarah Watson, from Sheffield.

“Kate is a hero in so many ways. Not only is she a fabulous midwife but she is also extremely passionate about antenatal and postnatal health, fitness and wellbeing,” says Sarah.

“Kate offers great advice on all areas in pregnancy, and I believe that it is because of Kate’s class that I had a healthy and fantastic pregnancy and labour. We all attended Kate’s postnatal ‘return to exercise’ class which helped us all return to fitness safely and really helped us understand how we could exercise. Kate’s classes have been a real lifeline for all of us. Kate has been a huge inspiration to us, and everyone that has attended her classes.”

Kate’s passion for pregnancy health led her to set up and run her own ‘Keep Mums Fit’ antenatal aerobics and Pilates classes, giving mums-to-be the opportunity to exercise safely and gently – a key factor to maintaining a healthy pregnancy. Kate has been running the classes for five-and-a-half years.

“It was amazing to win this award, but I don’t know about being a national hero,” says Kate. “I am passionate about helping mums keep fit both before and after pregnancy. I think if children see their mums exercising then it really encourages them to do so. I would really like to see more done to encourage pregnant women to exercise from the GP to the health visitor. It can really help.

“She stays in touch, offers personalised advice for each pregnancy and is there whenever you need it.

“She’s even attended all our little ones’ first birthday parties. She is always smiling and makes her classes so much fun because she loves doing them.”

As a midwife, Kate goes the extra mile for her patients, offering them support and advice outside of her working hours whenever they need it.

“When classmate Janine suffered with complications at birth and her little boy was in intensive care, Kate often took the time to visit her when she wasn’t on shift, to reassure her, to be a shoulder to lean on and talk her through any questions she had. I know Janine found her support invaluable.”

Tommy’s Health Campaigns Manager, Beckie Lang says: “With approximately one in five women being obese at the start of their pregnancy, and half of women of childbearing age being either overweight 
or obese, managing one’s weight during pregnancy 
has never been more important.

“We are thrilled to be able to recognise such great practice and congratulate Kate on her successful contribution to pregnancy health, and both antenatal and postnatal care.”

Going the extra mile

Tommy’s is a national charity, funding medical research into pregnancy complications – such as premature birth, miscarriage and stillbirth.

As well as providing support for anyone who has suffered the trauma of a pregnancy loss or complication, Tommy’s also provides free pregnancy health information for all parents-to-be.

Tommy’s Five Point Pregnancy Plan – covering nutrition, weight, exercise, smoking and mental health – is part of the charity’s drive to support mums-to-be have the healthiest pregnancy possible.