Supporting Maternal Mental Health
Strong families lead to healthy communities, and nurturing maternal mental wellness is the best place to start.
Our mission at the Life With A Baby Foundation (legal name Healthy Start, Healthy Future) is to help foster strong maternal mental health. The challenges for new parents is real and everyone deals with them differently. That’s why we focus on inclusivity. Whether that’s supporting a newcomer to Canada with parenting workshops in their native-tongue or connecting parents who have experienced a pre-term baby in the neonatal intensive care unit, we’re here to help.
Life With A Baby Foundation is a registered Canadian charity. We manage all costs associated with running a registered charity. These include insurance (which covers the operations of every chapter), administrative and office materials, financial management including bookkeeping, accounting, annual audits and tax filing.
We are responsible for hiring incremental personnel to assist with events, fundraisers, and special initiatives, as well as all national advertising and outreach. We take care of all digital management, including website maintenance, security, and hosting.
We take pride in being as fiscally and environmentally responsible as we can by reusing, recycling, and procuring donated materials as much as possible.
Perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADs) can affect up to 1 in 5 new mothers and are underdiagnosed and undertreated in Canada.1 Peer to peer programs alone can help reduce symptoms up to 50%.2
Meet Our Board of Directors
As chair of the board of directors of Life With A Baby Foundation, Scott brings over 35 years of experience to oversee the foundation’s high-level deliverables, vision and mission. Having worked with some of Canada’s largest financial services companies, including Canada Life and The Co-Operators Group, Scott began his career in sales and marketing, elevating into executive roles, including chairman of Heritage Education Funds (2004 – 2017), overseeing the management of assets of over $2.7 billion.
Scott is also involved in Toronto and York region as a community activist and has served as co-chair on a York region school council. His lifelong commitment to kids and families, along with his expertise in financial and business management, is a pivotal asset to the Life With A Baby Foundation.
Barbara Morris-Blake is the President of Elevate Organizations, an organizational development consultancy that helps organizations succeed through the power of their people. She is a founding member of Up With Women, a national non-profit organization that partners previously homeless women with business coaches to help them develop in their careers.
Barbara splits her time between Austin, Texas and Toronto. She was recently appointed to the Board of the Texas Association of Business and is spearheading the Texas-Canada Trade Coalition, and is a member of the Criminal Justice Committee. Barbara sits on the Board of the Integral Care Foundation. Integral Care provides mental health services a issue that Barbara is passionate about connecting all people with the care they need to live a mentally healthy life.
As a new mom, Claire Kerr-Zlobin faced social isolation, anxiety, and loneliness. Following a diagnosis of postpartum anxiety and depression, she set out to build the support system she wished already existed. In 2008, Claire founded Life With A Baby---a peer-support program that connects women to each other and a wide range of mental health resources across the province of Ontario. Healthy Start Healthy Future was created a year later to support vulnerable families and improve maternal mental health outcomes. Since then, Claire has emerged as a pivotal advocate to broker change in the recognition, treatment, and stigma of maternal mental health. Claire is a key stakeholder the SUMMIT research project representing patient and patients advocates to inform the development, implementation and dissemination of a large, multi-center trial.
Narie Ju-Hong is Narie Ju-Hong is a mother of two and a Dance educator with the Peel District School since 2004. Narie is passionate about teaching young people how to be respectful, caring and responsible citizens, focusing on the arts, specifically through dance.
Being of East Asian descent, Narie has been integral to her school’s founding of the Asian Student Alliance as a staff advisor, she relishes sharing her shared support and perspectives as a parent, teacher and person of colour with her students.
Narie got involved with Life With a Baby when her first child was born in 2010, first attending and then becoming more involved by volunteering to organize events. She feels fortunate to share her wisdom and experience and is honoured to be a Life With a Baby board member.
1 Dennis, C. Psychosocial interventions for the treatment of perinatal depression. Best Practice & Research Clinical Obstetrics & Gynaecology. 2014