John Hunter Hospital Parenting Education



Parenting Education Groups are an integral part of your antenatal care, supporting the information gained at your antenatal appointments.

Courses are fun, with many activities, and you may meet similar families who live near you.  Some Birth and Parenting groups continue to meet and provide mutual support for years!

Make sure you contact us early in your pregnancy to get into the program with dates that best suits you. For your comfort, we recommend you complete your education classes before reaching 36 weeks.

All our educators are qualified midwives or physiotherapists and have special training in education and leading groups.

​Some programs attract a fee see below for prices. Concessions are available. 

Please note our Education programs are conducted at:

Level 2, 670 Hunter St Newcastle, in the Newcastle Community Health Building  (near KFC)

or at Belmont Hospital.

To reserve your spot in any Parenting Education course please contact us: -

        Phone: 4016 4595

        Monday to Friday 9am - 4pm

        (NB: If we need to return your call, our caller ID will be Private Number)

        OR you can email our office:   



Please Note:
Face-to-face classes have been suspended indefinitely BUT Parenting Education Service is still open. 

Birth and Parenting and Breastfeeding Information sessions will now be live streamed via skype with one of our experienced educators.

If you would like to book in for a online session please call us on

02 4016 4595 or complete the form below and forward to:-  


Parent Education Skype Booking form.docx.pdf


(Please save the booking form, then re-attach to the email)


Bookings are essential.


Online Skype Sessions


Labour and Birth Info session

(single session only)      

Online Skype Session

​Wednesday 27th May 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Thursday 28th May 2020​6pm to 7.30pm ​AVAILABLE
​Monday 1st June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
Tuesday 2nd June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​​AVAILABLE
​Wednesday 3rd June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Thursday 4th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Tuesday 9th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Wednesday 10th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Thursday 11th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm ​AVAILABLE
​Monday 15th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Tuesday 16th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Wednesday 17th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Thursday 18th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Monday 22nd June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Tuesday 23rd June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Wednesday 24th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Thursday 25th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE


(single session only)

​Online Skype Session

​Thursday 28th May 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​FULL
​Monday 1st June 20206pm to 7.30pm​​FULL
​Thursday 4th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​FULL
​Thursday 11th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Monday 15th June 20206pm to 7.30pm​​AVAILABLE
​Thursday 18th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Monday 22nd June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Thursday 25th June 2020​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE

​Newborn Baby Care

(single session only)

​Online Skype Session

​Monday 1st June​6pm to 7.30pm ​AVAILABLE
​Tuesday 2nd June3.30pm to 5pm​​AVAILABLE
​Tuesday 2nd June ​6pm to 7.30pm​FULL
​Tuesday 9th June​3.30pm to 5pm​AVAILABLE
​Tuesday 9th June​6pm to 7.30pm FULL
​Monday 15th June​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Tuesday 16th June3.30pm to 5pm​​AVAILABLE
​Tuesday 16th June​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE
​Tuesday 23rd June ​3.30pm to 5pm​AVAILABLE
​Tuesday 23rd June​6pm to 7.30pm​AVAILABLE

​Multiple Miracles

(single session only) 

​Online Skype Session




Class times


Birth and Parenting

From 26 weeks




Nuts and Bolts of Fatherhood


​Maternity Services Tour


Prepare & Aware

From 14 to 24 weeks


Multiple Miracles


Next Birth after Caesarean

To reserve your spot in any Parenting Education course please contact us: -

        Phone: 4016 4595

        Monday to Friday 9am - 4pm

        (NB: If we need to return your call, our caller ID will be Private Number)

        OR you can email our office:   


A summary of our programs: -

Prepare and Aware (2-hour session)

This program is an early pregnancy class for women, and is led by a women’s health physiotherapist. It is best attended from 14 to 24 weeks gestation.

You will:

  • Consider normal changes as the baby grows, and when to talk to the midwife or doctor
  • Experience a practical gym ‘workout’ especially for pregnant women
  • Know how to exercise safely and care for your back during pregnancy. 

Birth and Parenting (12 hours)

This program is best attended from 26 weeks. After attending the Birth and Parenting program, almost all parents report that they:

  • Have greater confidence to deal with labour, birth and becoming parents  
  • Will use the relaxation skills practised during the course
  • Are amazed and excited to learn about newborn baby behaviour
  • Found being in a group of similar parents helped them ask questions and consider different perspectives they did not think about before

The course covers a range of topics including:

  • Consider the transition from pregnancy to labour and when to call the midwife or come to hospital
  • Understand the hormones that affect labour, birth and the early interaction between mother and baby
  • Create an emotionally safe space to labour at home and in hospital
  • Experience many ways to help ease powerful contractions naturally
  • Make informed decisions about your care and unexpected events of labour, including medical forms of pain relief during labour
  • Consider ways that partner/support person can help during labour and after birth
  • Understand skin-to-skin care, breastfeeding and helping baby to sleep in the early weeks
  • Recognise and respond appropriately to baby’s communications
  • Consider the impact on couple and family relationships when bringing home baby, and develop strategies to minimise distress in the early weeks
  • Know about community resources and support

Birth and Parenting programs are located at John Hunter Hospital and Belmont Hospital.

The program is held over six weeks on Monday, Tuesday or Thursday evenings. You may also complete the class during the day on the weekend by attending two or three Saturday, or three Sunday morning classes.

Breastfeeding (2½-hours)

Women report greater confidence in breastfeeding their new baby after attending the Breastfeeding course.

By participating in the course, you will:

  • Observe skin-to-skin care, baby’s signs of readiness to feed, attachment and positioning of baby for feeding
  • Consider common challenges to breastfeeding during early weeks
  • Know local community resources and support

The Breastfeeding program is held every two weeks on Thursday evenings, or monthly on Friday mornings.

Breastfeeding for Diabetic Women 

This does NOT replace the Breastfeeding course, so mothers with diabetes who have not breastfed before are advised to come to both (on the same day).

A half-hour session held especially for pregnant women with diabetes, you will:

  • Understand the benefits of breastfeeding both for the diabetic mother and baby
  • Find out about the benefits of antenatal expression​
  • Consider common challenges to breastfeeding during early weeks
  • Know local community resources and support

Breastfeeding for Diabetic Women is held Friday mornings immediately after the Breastfeeding course

Nuts and Bolts of fatherhood (2½-hour session)

This program is for men who are about to become dads. This course is led by an experienced father and health professional. Expectant Dads will:

  • Explore the role and relationship changes likely to be experienced during transition to fatherhood
  • Consider strategies to being an effective support person
  • Develop an effective parenting relationship with your partner
  • Understand infant communications, why babies cry and develop strategies for difficult times

The nuts and bolts of being a dad program is fortnightly on Thursday evenings.

Maternity Services Tour (1-hour)

We invite you to take a tour of the hospital to see the birthing and postnatal facilities and clarify any questions you may have.

Maternity Service tours are held fortnightly on either a Saturday afternoon or Wednesday evening at John Hunter Hospital.

Next Birth after Caesarean (NBAC) - (2½ hour session)

It is optimal though not essential, that you attend the program at around 20 and 24 weeks gestation. This education program is for women and their support people who have had a previous caesarean birth and are considering birth options for thier current pregnancy.

This program will help you to gather current, consistent, evidence based information before making decisions about your next birth. The group will enable you to meet other couples with similar experiences and provide an opportunity to ask questions and seek clarity about the NBAC options.

Multiple Miracles (2½ hour session)

This session is held collaboratively with the Newcastle Multiple Birth Association. This session considers the different challenges multiple babies pose and is an opportunity to meet other couples who are also expecting more than one baby:

For parents who are expecting their first babies it is recommended that you also attend the birth and parenting and breastfeeding courses.

Program for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) Women

For women and their families who are having their baby in Newcastle for the first time (previous babies may have been born in homeland or another Australian centre).

An interpreter from the Multicultural Health Service assists with the program that allows women to:

  • See Delivery Suite/Birth Centre where the baby will be born
  • Discuss care of mother and baby during labour and after birth
  • Share the different cultural aspects of birth and early parenting. ​ 

A session for women who speak Mandarin is scheduled each 2 months.

Additional culturally-appropriate support may be obtained through referral to the Mothers, Obstetrics and Multicultural Support (MOMS) Program facilitated by our Multicultural Health Liaison Officers. Contact the Multicultural Health Unit for more information phone - 4921 4497.

YPG-Young Parents Group

A six week program is available especially for young parents and their support people and facilitated by the Family Care Midwives who can provide additional ongoing support.

Contact staff at the Antenatal Clinic who can arrange referral to this program.