JOETTE’S STORY OF COURAGE

Joette was just weeks away from giving birth when her blood pressure became dangerously high.

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Like most first-time mothers, Joette was excited when she found out she was pregnant. But she was also very, very nervous. You see, she didn’t have much experience with hospitals. She’d never even had a family doctor.

Joette grew up in Jamaica and moved to Canada when she was 18. In her culture, going to the doctor was for the more privileged.

As an immigrant and a black woman, she was also worried her concerns wouldn’t be taken seriously. She’d read stories in which the health issues of women of colour had been ignored … with devastating results.

It’s no wonder that when Joette developed pre-eclampsia – dangerously high blood pressure – late in her pregnancy, her nervousness turned to fear. She didn’t know what to expect, and was terrified she wouldn’t be able to get the care she and her baby needed.

When Joette bravely came to BC Women’s Hospital, the incredible care she received – supported by generous donors – soon put her fears to rest. She spent several days in the hospital before she was induced, and safely delivered a healthy baby girl, Winnie.

During her stay, the nurses made sure to answer all her questions, check on her regularly, and respond to her concerns with professionalism and compassion. Before and after her daughter was born, the nurses went above and beyond to make Joette feel safe, valued, and ready for life with the newest member of her family.

“They certainly made you feel like family. They took care of us. We’re never going to forget that.” – Joette

When Joette headed home with tiny Winnie in her arms, she had a whole new perspective on hospitals. “The hospital now means a sense of security and human connection,” she says. “I know I’ll get the care I need, and I’ll get it in a way that will make me feel good about myself.”

Every woman deserves to receive the very best healthcare. And donors to the BC Women’s Health Foundation raise the bar for women’s healthcare in so many ways.

For Joette, donations funded advanced training for nurses working with new moms and babies – like those who gave her such amazing care. And moving forward donors can support new initiatives like the Partners in Action Engagement Fund, which will enable BC Women’s Hospital to run focus groups and one-on-one interviews with women, so their voices are heard and integrated into the model of care.

Help give women the exceptional healthcare they deserve.